Related Legs (Yokohama Dandelions), 2001

Photo: ©ImagenSubliminal (Miguel de Guzman + Rocio Romero)

Photo: ©ImagenSubliminal (Miguel de Guzman + Rocio Romero)

Photo: ©ImagenSubliminal (Miguel de Guzman + Rocio Romero)


Two-channel video installation,
color, sound, 21:51 min
Lace curtains, children’s chairs

Working primarily with video, sound, and installation, Swiss artist Pipilotti Rist has been creating hauntingly beautiful compositions that explore the relationships between the natural environment, the body, and inner psychological landscapes since the mid 1980s. This work evokes a state of trance-like liminality, using fragmented and rotating video sequences, projected onto an arrangement of old-fashioned lace curtains hung at various heights, as well as onto the floor and walls of the exhibition space. This ambient fluidity is the result of a projection through a mirror scanner, which makes the imagery wander following a circular course coupled with a fixed projection. It is intensified by drum rhythms, dreamy and ethereal sounds, and the laughter of a girl. Visitors move through the flow of color-saturated images that seem at once hallucinatory, real, and manifestly synthetic: two women in the street in high heels and knee-length skirts, a naked woman crouching on the floor and jumping across a doctor’s office, a woman smearing her make-up against a window, gas burners rotating like abstract haloes, dandelions moving in the breeze, a TV monitor burning, and other such scenes. Shot with different film equipment and dynamically edited, the images result from camera work that eludes stable spatial references and confuses coordinates and cardinal points, creating an unsettling mix of desirous pleasure with a sense of fear and disorientation. In Rist’s feminist terms, these strong sensory and embodied impressions are supposed to reinforce a sense of intimacy, fragility, and affect, also inspiring a desire for joyful rebellion.

Born in Grabs, Switzerland, in 1962. Lives in Zurich, Switzerland.
Laura Barnett. Pipilotti Rist: “We all come from between our mother’s legs”. Interview article on The Guardian, 2011. Full article here

Elisabeth Mahoney. Pipilotti Rist, Show a Leg. Exhibition at Tramway in Glasgow, 2001. The Guardian, 2001. Full article here 

Other than Yourself. An Investigation between Inner and Outer Space. Exhibition Catalog. TBA21, 2008

PASSAGES. Travels in Hyperspace. Exhibition Catalog here. Works from the Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary at LABoral, Centro de Arte y Creación Industrial, 2010

Paola Morsiani, Wishing Synchronicity: works by Pipilotti Rist. Exhibition Catalog, Contemporary Art Museum Houston, 2006

Pipilotti Rist, Francis McKee. Pipilotti Rist: Show a Leg. Exhibition Catalog, Tramway Glasgow, 2001
Artist's website: