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Stuart Ringholt

Untitled (Clock)  2014

clockwork, tubular bells, world globe, steel, glass, electronics

280 × 202 × 100cm

Museum of Contemporary Art, purchased with funds provided by the MCA Foundation, 2014

2014.65
on display

About the Artwork

Stuart Ringholt’s Untitled (Clock) is a huge, custom-built clock that is approximately 3m high and 2m wide. Clocks of this size are usually seen from afar, ensconced in the towers of railway stations and town halls. This clock is modelled on one that belongs on a lounge room mantelpiece, quietly ticking away the minutes of domestic life, marking mealtimes, bedtimes and the routines of the everyday. Ringholt has not only enlarged the timepiece, he has compressed the time it tells. An hour on this clock passes in 45 minutes, a day in 18 hours.

Made with the assistance of a horologist, Ringholt’s mechanism is a working clock. Its back is open to inspection, where the mechanisms spin and tic in a mesmerising choreography of interval measurement. The hand that sweeps around its face proposes shorter days and nights, with many more yesterdays, but many more tomorrows. Through this radical adjustment, Ringholt conjures with the relativity of time; the way it drags or flies depending on how bored or stimulated we are, the extreme slowness of time passing in moments of great duress, the sense of it whirling past on those occasions when we most want it to linger and endure. This is the difference between mechanical time, marked in seconds, and emotional time, marked in moments. Ringholt’s clock registers the dissonance between time as it is measured and time as it is experienced, between a fixed aggregation and a relative phenomenon, counting down our days as we spin in space.

What would be the biological reality of planet earth rotating once every eighteen hours instead of twenty-four? That’s the fictional proposition of The Clock. You have less time, but you have more days in the year. So there’s a sense of losing something, and also gaining something. With an 18-hour clock there’s a lot more yesterdays.

Stuart Ringholt, 2013

VIDEO: Stuart Ringholt on his practice and 'Untitled (Clock)', 2014

Stuart Ringholt

– About the artist

Born 1971, Perth. Lives and works Melbourne.


Stuart Ringholt’s work takes many forms, from performance, video and sculpture to collaborative workshops, and is characterised by a resolute sense of art as a social enterprise. Personal and social themes such as fear and embarrassment are often presented through absurd situations or amateur self-help environments, including nude gallery tours, anger workshops and participatory performance works. Other works involve the transformation of the found object and popular media imagery that meaningfully interrogate and impact on the original.

Stuart Ringholt has exhibited widely, both nationally and internationally, since 2003. Recent solo exhibitions include ArtCologne (2016); Stuart Ringholt: Nudes, Signs, and a Contract Osmos Gallery New York (2015); New Works Milani Gallery Brisbane (2015); Stuart Ringholt: Kraft, Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne and Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane (2014); Starring William Shatner As Curator, Society, Sydney and TCB, Melbourne (2011); Vitrines, Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne (2010); Video Works, Club Laundromat, New York (2009); Low Sculpture, Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne (2008); Gallery Room, Mirka at Tolarno Hotel/Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne (2007); and Pulse, RMIT Project Space, Melbourne (2006).

Recent group exhibitions include Performa 15 with Richard Bell et al (2015); Dead Ringer PICA Perth (2015); 9/11 Moana Project Space Perth (2015); Lurid Beauty; Australian Surrealism and its Echoes NGV Australia (2015); Taking It All Away MCA Sydney (2014); Benglis 73/74 Sutton Project Space (2014); Art Is A Verb Monash University Museum of Art (2014); The Working Life IMA Brisbane (2014); The Talking Cure Oakville Galleries Canada (2014); Impact Art Gallery of Western Australia (2014); The Last Laugh apexart New York (2013); dOCUMENTA(13), Kassel, Germany (2012); Local Positioning Systems, MCA, Sydney (2012); Open House Singapore Biennale (2011); Power to the People: Contemporary Conceptualism and the Object in Art, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne (2011); Before and After Science: 2010 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide (2010); Still Vast Reserves, Magazzino d’Arte, Rome (2009); Revolutions: Forms that Turn, Biennale of Sydney (2008); and The One and the Many, Dell Gallery, Queensland College of Art, Brisbane (2007). Ringholt’s work is held in a number of collections, including the Art Gallery of Western Australia, MCA Sydney, University of Queensland Art Museum, Brisbane, GOMA Brisbane, State Library of Victoria, Melbourne, as well as private collections.

The first monograph on Ringholt’s work, Kraft, was co-published by Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne and Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane in 2014.

Learn more
– Other collection works by the artist

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