Zürich – Roni Horn at Hauser & Wirth, through May 25th 2013

May 3rd, 2013

Roni Horn, Untitled (“Consider Incompleteness as a Verb”), (2010-2012), via Hauser and Wirth Zurich

Currently on view at Hauser & Wirth Zürich is a solo show by American visual artist and writer Roni Horn, encompassing the artist’s signature glass sculptures alongside a photographic series created between 2010 and 2012.

Roni Horn, Untitled (Weather), (2010—2011), via Hauser and Wirth

Born in 1955 in New York, Roni Horn dropped out of high school at age 16 years of age and enrolled at the Rhode Island School of Design where she received her BFA. She describes her work as subverting the notion of ‘identical experience,’ emphasizing our dependence on our environment and contextual moorings to define the total space of the artistic work. Accordingly, she focuses on site and time-specific works, combining minimalist aesthetics with a studied understanding of flux and movement through her pieces. Horn embraces humanity and nature as mirrored experiences, in that we attempt to remake nature in our own image.

Roni Horn, Untitled (Weather), (2011), via Hauser and Wirth

After graduating from Yale University’s MFA sculpture program, Horn traveled to Iceland on a Yale fellowship, and became fascinated with the setting – its climate, culture, geology, and geography.  Since then much of her work has revolved around themes springing from this location, in particular the circular movements of the sun and weather. Weather in particular has been important to Horn, even before her exhibited photographic series Untitled (Weather). Previously, she created installations based on Icelandic geological and urban formations, namely Yous in You (1997), a rubber-tiled walkway in a train station in Basel that mimicked a geological formation in Iceland and Some Thames (2000), a permanent photographic installation at the University of Akureyri in Iceland, with 80 images of water meant to mirror the students’ process of learning over time.

Roni Horn, Untitled (Weather), (2011), via Hauser and Wirth

The sculpture on view at Hauser & Wirth, Untitled (“Consider incompleteness as a verb.”) (2010-12) includes cubes made from two-color glass that changes from blue to lavender to acquamarine depending on the time of day and the weather, resembling a block of ice, smooth and glossy on the surface and matte on the sides.  The title references a passage from Canadian poet Anne Carson’s book, “Plainwater.”

Roni Horn (Installation View), via Hauser and Wirth Zurich

Untitled (Weather), displayed across from the glass sculptures, consists of close-up photographs of a woman’s face, while she is bathing in the hot springs and pools in Iceland.  In each photograph, the facial expressions of the woman vary slightly, depending on the weather conditions. The sculptures and the photographs reflect the way humans and natural elements interact with and change over time depending on the surrounding environmental conditions, specifically the weather.

Roni Horn, Untitled (Weather), (2010-2011), via Hauser and Wirth

Documenting the subtle inflections and alterations caused by the work’s environment, Roni Horn’s show is another entry in the artist’s ongoing investigations into the space around the work itself.  The exhibition will remain on view through May 25th, 2013.

Roni Horn, “Untitled (Weather),” 2010-2011

Roni Horn, Untitled (“Consider Incompleteness as a Verb”), (2010-2012), via Hauser and Wirth Zurich

Roni Horn (Installation View), via Hauser and Wirth Zurich

—E. Baker

Related Links:
Exhibition Page [Hauser & Wirth Zürich]