Doug Aitken: Electric Earth
May 28, 2017 - Aug 20, 2017

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.

Purchase the exhibition catalogue here.

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 1 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.