Palais de Tokyo

Opening September 14, 2006: FIVE BILLION YEARS
Is there a fixed point in the universe?

The new artistic leadership of the Palais de Tokyo proposes a single curatorial project that will take shape over the next 12 months. The first chapter is FIVE BILLION YEARS and consists of group exhibitions, one-person exhibitions, special projects, performances, lectures, and other events:
Group exhibitions:
5,000,000,000 YEARS – an exhibition that, mutant-like, adopts the same name as the program-chapter that contains it.
(Christian Andersson / Artists Unknown / Michel Blazy / Mike Bouchet / Loris Cecchini / Philippe Decrauzat / Marcel Duchamp / Ceal Floyer / Urs Fischer / Mark Handforth / Joachim Koester / Vincent Lamouroux / Lang-Baumann / Tony Matelli / Jonathan Monk / François Morellet / Gianni Motti / Charles Ray)

ONE SECOND, ONE YEAR – an exhibition of randomly activated artworks.
(Alighiero e Boetti / François Curlet / Lara Favaretto / Graham Gussin / Leopold Kessler / Kristof Kintera / Jonathan Monk / Fernando Ortega / Werner Reiterer / Roman Signer / Kris Vleeschouwer)
One-person exhibitions:
JOACHIM KOESTER (opening November 2)
Special Projects, opening the first Thursday of every month:
ULLA VON BRANDENBURG (opening October 5)
The windows of the Palais de Tokyo:
Thursdays at Five Billion Years:
(by way of zombies, mini-bike ballets, and lectures by motorcyclists)
Don’t miss the special events on opening day:
The worlds best loggers take part in a free-style chainsaw-sculpture competition. A jury made up of artists who are well-versed in handling a chainsaw selects the winners, who will be awarded a one-week show at the Palais de Tokyo.

Is there a fixed point in the universe?

Five billion years ago, the universe began an accelerated expansion. Astronomers hypothesize that a force called “dark energy” dominated the gravity of matter and caused the universe to stop slowing down and to begin a never-ending growth spurt. With this dramatic shift, the universe launched into a state of perpetual movement. Always in flux, reality loses its ability to appear as a series of fixed reference points or as a web of consistent and reliable connections. Instead, the elusive nature of speed and time penetrates our awareness of the world and compromises the comfort of stability. In a similar way, art eludes fixed positions or places and instead glides over the visible and reveals the many layers that serve in its construction. Art can make reality denser, and can make it accelerate.

FIVE BILLION YEARS is the first of three chapters of a year-long program at the Palais de Tokyo. It begins a reflection not on the exhibition as a singular event a fixed point that is isolated in time and space but on the very notion of a program, an experience with a temporal cursor that is constantly in motion, in permanent fluctuation. As the beginning and first segment of a new program that will feature exhibitions and events over the next 12 months, FIVE BILLION YEARS builds on the Palais de Tokyos commitment to artists working today by embodying the uncontainable and elastic nature of contemporary art.

The rapidly expanding artistic field that is FIVE BILLION YEARS spreads throughout the Palais de Tokyos exhibition spaces. Incorporating both solo and group shows, FIVE BILLION YEARS also includes a multitude of events, including an international competition of chainsaw sculpture, a lecture by an astrophysicist and a music therapist, and a ballet for mini-motorcycles.