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Ugo Rondinone: OUR MAGIC HOUR

Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA)


25 Jun 2003 to 31 Aug 2003

Curator: Russell Storer

about the exhibition

Since the early 1990s, Swiss-born, New York-based artist Ugo Rondinone has developed a practice characterised by diversity. Producing drawings, paintings, sculptures, photographs and videos, often presented as room-scale installations, Rondinone creates highly artificial spaces that generate intoxicating moods of melancholy and desire.

For each exhibition, Rondinone presents signature motifs such as clowns, circular ‘target’ paintings and windows in different combinations, forming an increasingly complex artistic vocabulary over time. For Rondinone’s first solo exhibition in Australia, Ugo Rondinone: OUR MAGIC HOUR, four separate yet interrelated installations were created, featuring works from the previous eight years.

Rondinone’s installations are carefully constructed to encourage shifting moods and sensations, playing with the boundaries of fiction and reality. His poetic works are often accompanied by soundtracks and atmospheric lighting, and draw on aspects of cinema, art history, literature, theatre, fashion photography and pop music. While there is a seductive quality to the works, bathed in coloured light and surrounded by soft fabric walls, they also utilise disruptive devices such as distortion, repetition and reflection. In each case the artist creates environments that invite an emotional response to the images and experiences of contemporary life.

Also featured as part of this exhibition was a new site-specific neon sculpture, displayed on the northern roof of the MCA building. OUR MAGIC HOUR (2003) was the latest and largest in a series of neon rainbow works that were displayed across Europe, the United States, Mexico, Israel and Turkey.

Presented by Kaldor Public Art projects in association with the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia.

Featuring Works from the MCA Collection

Fred Fehlau
  • No it can
Luciano Perna
  • Norton family project Christmas Card
Kara Walker
  • Freedom A Fable
  • Freedom: A Fable