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Philippe Parreno - Serpentine Gallery

Philippe Parreno. Invisibleboy 2010. Film still. Courtesy of Centre National des Arts Plastiques (CNAP). © 2010 Philippe Parreno.

Exhibition preview

FROM November 25, 2010 to February 13, 2011, the Serpentine Gallery is presenting Philippe Parreno‘s first solo exhibition in a public institution in the UK.

Parreno rose to prominence in the 1990s, earning critical acclaim for his work, which employs a diversity of media including film, sculpture, performance and text. Taking the exhibition as a medium, Parreno has sought to redefine the exhibition experience by exploring its possibilities beyond a collection of individual works.

Parreno’s exhibition at the Serpentine Gallery has been conceived as a scripted space in which a series of events unfolds. The visitor will be guided through the Galleries by a timeline of orchestrated sound and image. Noise from Kensington Gardens will be heard inside, as though the outside is leaking into the Gallery. The window blinds will move automatically to reveal sudden change of weather.

The show will feature the UK premiere of Parreno’s latest film, Invisibleboy (2010), the story of an illegal Chinese immigrant boy who sees imaginary monsters, which are scratched onto the film stock. Fantasy and social realism, fiction and documentary overlap within the film’s shots.

Also included in the exhibition is June 8, 1968 (2009), which recalls the train voyage that transported the corpse of assassinated senator Robert Kennedy from New York to Washington D.C. Kennedy’s body and the Invisibleboy are characters that float between several layers of reality.

The Serpentine exhibition follows a series of related but distinct retrospectives of the artist’s work presented at Kunsthalle Zürich, 2009; Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2009; the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, 2009-2010; and the Centre for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, 2010.

Philippe Parreno was born in 1964 in Oran, Algeria and lives and works in Paris. Other major exhibitions of the artist’s work include: Center for Contemporary Art, CCA Kitakyushu, Japan, 2006; Kunsthalle Zürich, 2006; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, 2003; Musée d’Art Moderne de le Ville de Paris, 2002; and Moderna Museet, Stockholm, 2001.

The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue focusing on Parreno’s work in film and featuring essays by art historian and critic Michael Fried; curator and critic Nicolas Bourriaud; and art historian, writer and curator Dorothea von Hantelmann.

Image: Philippe Parreno. Invisibleboy 2010. Film still. Courtesy of Centre National des Arts Plastiques (CNAP). © 2010 Philippe Parreno.

A major exhibition by Swedish artist Klara Lidén continues at the Serpentine Gallery until November 7, 2010.

Also see Anish Kapoor: Turning the World Upside Down

Serpentine Gallery, Kensington Gardens, London, W2 3XA