Doug Aitken: Electric Earth is the first survey to comprehensively examine Aitken’s experimentations across mediums and disciplines, and it is organized as a full collaboration and dialogue with the artist and his studio. From his early multichannel video installation diamond sea, 1997, to his more recent performance-based works, such as SONG I, 2012/2015, the exhibition unfolds around the major moving-image installations that articulate Aitken’s central subject matters, from catastrophic environmental depredation to unprecedented technological mediation; self-contained, decentralized communication; and the incursion of commerce into every aspect of our social relationships. The uniqueness of Aitken’s body of work reveals itself in its mesmerizing treatment of such concerns. Cannily incorporating a wide range of visual vocabularies drawn from the realms of cinema, advertising, communications, and the history of art alike, and strategically structuring both architectural environments and the editing of images and sounds in order to take in the viewer and overwhelm the senses, Aitken exposes audiences to ideas—and to each other, in communal spaces—by means of a nearly hypnotic aesthetic. Conceptualized as an entropic landscape, suspended between city, broadcasting machine, and labyrinth, the exhibition is punctuated by the signs, sculptures, and images, unbound from vernacular language and culture, that are at the center of Aitken’s art.
The exhibition’s logic incorporates that of the nomadic cultural incubator, cross-continental happening, and moving earthwork Station to Station, 2013, which, like so many of Aitken’s works, embraced a collaborative spirit beyond disciplines and beyond walls to reimagine the nature of what a work of art can be, of what an art experience can do.
Doug Aitken’s linear films will be screened in chronological order in conjunction with the exhibition.
These films will be screened in the auditorium from 11 am to 2 pm, Tuesday through Friday, and Saturdays from 10 am to noon.
Note: There will be no screenings on June 10 or August 1-3.
11 am: inflection, 1992
11:05 am: i’d die for you, 1993
11:15 am: hysteria, 1998
11:22 am: eraser, 1998
11:37 am: i am in you, 2000
11:48 am: interiors, 2002
11:55 am: sleepwalkers, 2007
12:11 pm: the handle comes up, the hammer comes down, 2009
12:16 pm: Frontier, 2009
12:34 pm: black mirror, 2011
10 am: inflection, 1992
10:05 am: i’d die for you, 1993
10:15 am: hysteria, 1998
10:22 am: eraser, 1998
10:37 am: i am in you, 2000
10:48 am: interiors, 2002
10:55 am: sleepwalkers, 2007
11:11 am: the handle comes up, the hammer comes down, 2009
11:16 am: Frontier, 2009
11:34 am: black mirror, 2011
Doug Aitken: Electric Earth is organized by The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.
Lead support is provided by the Annenberg Foundation, The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, Aileen Getty Foundation, Eugenio Lopez, LUMA Foundation, Maurice Marciano, Carolyn Powers, and Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo.
Major support is provided by Mandy and Cliff Einstein, Mimi and Peter Haas Fund, and Panasonic.
Generous support is provided by Jill and Peter Kraus, the National Endowment for the Arts, Maria Seferian, and Julia Stoschek Foundation e. V., Düsseldorf.
Additional support is provided by Juliet McIver, Eileen and Peter Michael, and David and Angella Nazarian.
Supporters of the exhibition catalogue include 303 Gallery, Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Regen Projects, and Victoria Miro Gallery.
Exhibitions at MOCA are supported by the MOCA Fund for Exhibitions with lead annual support provided by Delta Air Lines, Shari Glazer, Hästens, and Sydney Holland, founder of the Sydney D. Holland Foundation. Generous funding is also provided by Jerri and Dr. Steven Nagelberg, and Thao Nguyen and Andreas Krainer.
Exhibition support in Fort Worth is generously provided by the Kleinheinz Family Endowment for the Arts and Education.