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MARK LECKEY: ON PLEASURE BENT Exhibition at the Hammer Museum through Dec. 8

Dates: August 31, 2013 – December 8, 2013

Location: Hammer Museum, UC Los Angeles

Through a multi-disciplinary practice that encompasses sculpture, sound, film, and performance, British artist Mark Leckey explores the potential of the human imagination to appropriate and to animate a concept, an object, or an environment. Drawing on his personal experiences as a London-based artist, who spent his formative years in the north of England, Leckey returns frequently to ideas of personal history, desire and transformation in his work.

On Pleasure Bent is a new body of work in which Leckey attempts to form a kaleidoscopic memoir, assembling his past from the imagery that he believes conditioned him. The exhibition will include all new works, several being exhibited publicly for the first time. Objects will include LED screens featuring looped animations, animated screens made up of highly-magnified computer screens silk screened with images, as well as cinema lobby style ’standees’ and a trailer for a new video.

Organized by Ali Subotnick, curator, with Emily Gonzalez, curatorial assistant.


By Alex Kitnick

Mark Leckey speculates on objects and on the future. He is interested in all types of things—from prosthetic hands to Felix the Cat—and what these things do to us as people. He is intrigued by their physical characteristics—their veneer and heft, their weight and feel—and by their place in larger systems of circulation and distribution. He gravitates toward hard objects but only once they have been translated into something else, transformed into a JPEG and retrofitted with a new virtual life. Leckey has said, “sculpture is what I do,” but sculpture in his hands is no longer a rigid, obdurate thing but rather something elusive and shape-shifting, malleable and mysterious. So too are the objects from which the artist takes inspiration.
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Mark Leckey was born in Birkenhead, England, in 1964 and lives and works in London. He received his BA from Newcastle Polytechnic. Leckey has exhibited his videos, multimedia installations, sculptures, and collages widely and has had solo shows at the Banff Centre, Alberta, Canada (2012); the Serpentine Gallery, London (2011); Milton Keynes Gallery, Milton Keynes, England (2010); Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne (2009); Le Consortium, Dijon, France (2007); Portikus, Frankfurt (2005); and Migros Museum, Zurich (2003). His work has been included in numerous important international exhibitions, including Il Palazzo Enciclopedico / The Encyclopedic Palace, Venice Biennale (2013); Ghosts in the Machine, New Museum, New York (2012); 10,000 Lives, Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, South Korea (2010); Moving Images: Artists & Video/Film, Museum Ludwig, Cologne (2010); Playing Homage, Vancouver Contemporary Art Gallery; Sympathy for the Devil, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (2007); Istanbul Biennial (2005); and Manifesta 5, European Biennial of Contemporary Art, San Sebastián, Spain (2004). Leckey has presented his lecture/performances at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, London; the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; and the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and he participated in Performa 11 (2011) in New York. Leckey recently organized the traveling exhibition The Universal Addressability of Dumb Things for the Hayward Gallery in London, and he will participate in the 2013 Carnegie International at the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh. In 2008 Leckey received the Turner Prize and the Central Art Award, Kölnischer Kunstverein. He is currently reader in fine art at Goldsmiths, London, and from 2005 to 2009 he was professor of film studies at the Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. His work is in the collections of the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Museum Het Domein Sittard, the Netherlands; Tate Gallery, London; Trussardi Foundation, Milan; and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis.

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