Saturday, 31 December 2011

10 Reasons to love Pipilotti Rist at the Hayward

1. She's got a cool name - Pipilotti Rist was born Elisabeth Charlotte Rist in Grabs, Switzerland, in 1962. As a teenager she renamed herself Pipilotti in honour of Pippi Longstocking, the fearless, funny and uninhibited heroine of Astrid Lindgren’s children’s books *

2. Her work has a sense of wonder - By combining videos with everyday objects, she changes their nature and imbues the most ordinary events or objects with a sense of wonder *

3. She uses technology in intriguing ways - She integrates video projectors and screens in unexpected things and places: tiny monitors are hidden in handbags or displayed on a gigantic lettuce, projectors are placed in a watering-can and a hanging saucepan, and a book, a vase and a chair are all used as projection surfaces *

4. Her work is personal but is something that everyone can relate to - She believes that the objects that surround us contain memories and have stories to tell. She has progressively redefined the relationship between audience and art work, creating all-enveloping visual environments that place particular importance on the viewer *

5. She creates a parallel world and invites you into it - "When I close my eyes, my imagination roams free. In the same way I want to create spaces for video art that rethink the very nature of the medium itself. I want to discover new ways of configuring the world, both the world outside and the world within" *

6. Her work is psychedelic - She fuses dazzling colour, sensual images and mesmerising music to create immersive video installations in which the visitors themselves become important elements *

7. Her work is playful - She studied graphic design in Vienna, where she made Super-8 animation films, created stage sets for bands and did a lot of drawing. Deciding that she wanted to work with moving images, she returned to Switzerland to study video in Basel *

8. She loves music - Her first video work, I’m Not The Girl Who Misses Much, was made there in 1986 while she was still a student. Soon afterwards, she began working as a freelance video technician and joined the folk-punk band and performance group Les Reines Prochaines *

9. Her work is sensual in a 'nice' way - At no point is the content ever sordid, only ever a sensual exploration of the female and male form - Ann-Marie Rayney, Artists Insight

10. She presents a personal feminist viewpoint - Her works seem like necessary, important counters to a more mainstream image of women's bodies in film – an exploration of looking, spying, glimpsing - Laura McLean-Ferris, the Independent

Quotes marked with an asterisk above are taken or adapted from the Hayward Eyeball Massage website. The site also carries a lot of background information and a number of videos, including this taste of the exhibition:

And an interview with Pipilotti Rist:

If you want to read an excellent 'proper' review of Pipilotti Rist's exhibition see Adrian Searle's piece in the Guardian. And then go and see it (until January 8th).

Happiness is a Warm Gun features in Rist's I'm not the Girl who Misses Much 1986 installation (which is part of this exhibition). Here are some Beatle mixes that keen fans may enjoy: The left channel mix with unused Tuba overdub; the control monitor mix; the opal organ mix; and, of course, the original:

Finally, a Happy New Year to everyone - To finish up, here's a fun New Year's Eve game to play (courtesy of Mondo Blogo - click for more pics):

Far out, man ...

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