October 18, 2015 - The MAC (Metropolitan Arts Centre) - Felix Gonzalez-Torres
October 18, 2015

Felix Gonzalez-Torres

Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Untitled (For Jeff), 1992. Billboard, dimensions variable. © The Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation. Courtesy of Andrea Rosen Gallery, New York.

Felix Gonzalez-Torres
This Place

30 October 2015–24 January 2016

Preview: 29 October, 7–9pm

10 Exchange Street West
Belfast BT1 2NJ
Hours: Daily 11am–7pm

T +442890235053


This winter, seminal work by Cuban-born American artist Felix Gonzalez-Torres will fill all three of the MAC’s galleries whilst also spilling out beyond the building into the city, becoming entwined with the urban landscape of Belfast.

Curated by Eoin Dara, Felix Gonzalez-Torres: This Place will be the largest presentation of the artist’s work in Ireland to date. The exhibition, which will include a nuanced selection of works made by the artist between 1987 and 1994, will seek to explore the rich contextual pluralities inherent in Gonzalez-Torres’s work in relation to contemporary culture in Northern Ireland, considering dichotomies between solidity and fluidity, proximity and distance, unity and disarray, harmony and discord.

Throughout his career Gonzalez-Torres sought to respond to, subvert, and potentially challenge dominant social or political ideologies and beliefs, often using his artworks to poetically or playfully engage in dialogue about agency and ownership within public and private spaces. Within so much of his work is an invitation, or some might say provocation, to consider the role of art in questioning accepted societal truths, which remains as open and vital today as it did when it was first extended to the public over 25 years ago.

The exhibition will bring to Belfast audiences for the first time iconic works from the artist’s candy spill series, endlessly reproducible paper stack sculptures, a major public billboard work, subtly beautiful light string and bead curtain installations, as well as more intimate jigsaw puzzle works and paintings from significant lenders across the world such as the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington DC, the de la Cruz Contemporary Art Space in Miami, and the Hoffmann Collection in Berlin.

“Felix Gonzalez-Torres was undoubtedly one of the most influential artists of the latter half of the twentieth century, and his work continues to inspire new generations of artists, curators and audiences today. We’re hugely excited to be able to bring this beautiful work to the MAC, and hope this project will demonstrate the malleable brilliance of Gonzalez-Torres, as a Cuban-born American artist working in the US in the late 80s and early 90s whose chameleonic work can seamlessly fit into a never before explored setting in Northern Ireland.”
Eoin Dara (curator)

Public programme:
Saturday 14 November
Curator’s tour
Eoin Dara, curator of This Place, will lead a guided tour through the gallery spaces, talking about the development of the project and how we might consider Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s work in Belfast in 2015.

Tuesday 17 November
United in Anger: A History of ACT UP
In his lifetime, Felix Gonzalez-Torres always sought out a communal, active audience. His art is not meant for passive by-standers, it is offered up as a source of collaboration and active participation. In light of this we are hosting a screening and talk, in association with Outburst Queer Arts Festival, with author, activist, and academic Sarah Schulman, considering powerful models of collaborative community activism developed in response to the AIDS crisis in the US at the end of the twentieth century.

Thursday 3 December
Displacement, Deviation and the Heterotopic World of Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s Billboard Works

As the MAC stages Untitled (For Jeff) by Gonzalez-Torres for the first time in Northern Ireland, curator and writer Paul O’Neill will give a public lecture in relation to this body of work. In this talk O’Neill will read Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s billboard series through the theoretical lenses of heterotopia, sexuality and a notional double-loss of place.  This event will examine these works and explore their sense of ‘otherness’ in place, through what is visible, what can be seen and what is being performed through their representation and positioning in the public place-world.

Saturday 23 January
We are no longer needed by what we created
To mark the close of the project, the MAC will be presenting a newly commissioned text by writer Maria Fusco, developed in response to the work of Felix Gonzalez-Torres and on the occasion of the exhibition This Place.

For further information please contact Maeve Hawkins, Marketing Manager on T +028 9089 2966 or maeve [​at​] themaclive.com

This project is made possible with the generous support of the Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation, New York.


Felix Gonzalez-Torres at the MAC in Belfast
The MAC (Metropolitan Arts Centre)
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