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Time Tries All Things - a new video installation by Grace Weir at the Institute of Physics

Exhibition preview

TIME Tries All Things by Irish artist and filmmaker Grace Weir is the inaugural show in the Gallery at the Institute of Physics, a new £30M building in the heart of London’s Kings Cross and is on display from January 21 to March 29, 2019.

Weir’s immersive two screen video installation is a poetic and lyrical meditation on different conceptions of time; scientific, philosophical and cinematic. It has been developed from her collaboration with two renowned theoretical physicists, Professor David Berman of Queen Mary University of London and Professor Fay Dowker of Imperial College London.

Time Tries All Things invites viewers to reflect on their own lived experience of time and how it can be illuminated by scientific knowledge and theory.

The profound and complex question of how we understand time has exercised scientists, philosophers, writers and artists since the earliest civilisations, from Galileo to Stephen Hawking. The questions with which they have grappled are formidable: How do we measure time? Is it absolute or relative? Does it flow, moving forwards from a fixed, known past towards an unfixed, unknown future? Is time finite? Does it have a beginning, an end, or both? Is time an illusion? Is the past real? Does the future exist already?

Weir explores these questions through her 30-minute work, featuring Professor Dowker and Professor Berman, reflecting on their own theoretical perspectives on time.

Grace Weir said: “Time is intrinsic to both physics and film-making. How can we align the extraordinary theoretical concepts of time within physics with our everyday experiences of time and its representations? Time Tries All Things positions two differing concepts of time in a filmic portrayal of two physicists’ viewpoints, through the unfolding of a moment when a photograph is taken of a 19th century stone plaque. Carved with the words ‘Time trieth troth’, the moment opens into a consideration of the elasticity of the present instant and the flux of history.”

Born in Dublin Ireland in 1962, Grace Weir works primarily in the moving image and installation. Her work explores the dynamic of practice and representation at the levels where issues of identity and temporality coincide. Weir represented Ireland at the 49th International Venice Biennale and has exhibited widely nationally and internationally. She was recently Artist-in-Residence in the School Of Physics, Trinity College Dublin and had a solo exhibition at the Irish Museum of Modern Art in 2015-2016. To find out more about Weir, visit

Image: Grace Weir, Time Tries All Things, 2019, Video still © Grace Weir and Courtesy the artist and Institute of Physics.

Admission: Free.

Institute of Physics, 37 Caledonian Road, London, N1