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Martin Boyce: An Inn For Phantoms Of The Outside And In

01st June 2019

Martin Boyce: An Inn For Phantoms Of The Outside And In

Sleep opens within us an inn for phantoms. In the morning we must sweep out the shadows.

Gaston Bachelard

La poétique de la rêverie (The Poetics of Reverie) (1960)

Mount Stuart Trust is delighted to announce a solo exhibition by Martin Boyce this summer. Boyce presents a major outdoor commission in the landscaped grounds of Mount Stuart. Inspired by the memory of a tennis court long since dismantled, his ongoing interest in abandoned and disused spaces is awakened. The court is close to fiction, undocumented, a relic from the 1970’s. The artist reconsiders and recomposes the structure. Connecting with previous works such as the iconic 2002 Tramway installation Our Love is Like the Flowers, the Rain, the Sea and the Hours, Boyce continues his exploration of sites in between use and misuse, intention and subsequent being. His installation for Mount Stuart involves fragments of these landscapes, an abstracted sense of place rather than a literal description: “one place shipwrecked within another”.

“Over the years I’ve photographed a number of abandoned or disused tennis courts and I’ve collected similar images from books or cut from magazines. There is something fascinating about this rectangle of chain link fence that at once demarcates one place from another, one delineated use or activity from another. Equally fascinating is how over time this idea of use can shift, from organised tennis games to more improvised versions of play to, in a state of disrepair, a place to meet and hangout. It is this in between state that interests me. “

The installation, like a skewed container for dreams, sits with its gate open. The artist’s familiar iconographies are staged within, referencing his interests in twentieth century film noir, literature and the built environment. Boyce’s work mirrors the psyche; his work immerses the public in both personal and collective cultural memory.

An Inn For The Phantoms Of The Outside And In is sited midway from the gardens entrance to Mount Stuart on the ’45 Avenue, and is reached by taking the sign-posted walk from the Visitor Centre. At Mount Stuart itself, the series of framed photographic works A Partial Eclipse I and II, 2012 and 2017, are exhibited in the vaulted sandstone Crypt. These works are part of an ongoing library of images that feed into Boyce’s sculptural works. They reflect a certain pattern of landscapes and objects to which the artist is drawn and speak to his practice, which explores the space between the viewer and the subject “until the space itself becomes the subject”. The images resonate with a sense of stillness, of distance, and the uncertainty of time and place.

Martin Boyce was born in Hamilton, Scotland in 1967. He studied at Glasgow School of Art 1986 -1990 (BFA) and 1995 -1997 (MFA) and California Institute of the Arts 1996 (MFA exchange program). He is an artist whose sculptural works recall and reference the materials, textures and forms of the built urban environment. Using the iconography of both the everyday and the history of modern architecture and design, his sculptural installations form immersive environments and poetic landscapes.

Boyce represented Scotland at the Venice Biennale 2009 with the exhibition No Reflections and was the winner of the 2011 Turner Prize.

His solo exhibitions include The Light Pours Out, Esther Schipper Gallery, Berlin (2018); Hanging Gardens, A4 Museum in Chengdu, China (2018); Light Years, The Modern Institute, Glasgow (2017); Sleeping Chimneys. Dead Stars, Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York (2017); Spotlight - 'Do Words Have Voices', Tate Britain, London (2016); Spook School, CAPRI, Düsseldorf (2016); Martin Boyce: When Now is Night, RISD Museum, Providence (2015); Inside rooms drift in and out of sleep / While on the roof / An alphabet of aerials / Search for a language, Eva Presenhuber, Zurich (2015); Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Basel (2015); Stellar Remnants, Johnen Galerie, Berlin (2014); No Reflections, Venice Biennale, Venice (Scotland + Venice. Touring to DCA, Dundee) (2009); This Place is Close and Unfolded, Westfälischer Kunstverein, Munster (2008); Out Of This Sun, Into This Shadow, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham (2008); We Are Shipwrecked and Landlocked, RMIT University Alumni Courtyard, Melbourne (with Kaldor Art Projects) (2008); We Burn, We Shiver, Sculpture Center, New York (With Ugo Rondinone) (2008); A Lost Cat and Alleyways, Back Gardens, Pools and Parkways, Centre d'Art Contemporain, Geneva (2007); Electric Trees and Telephone Booth Conversations, FRAC des Pays de la Loire, Carquefou, France (2007); Broken Fall, Kabinett fur Aktuelle Kunst, Bremerhaven (2005); Dark Reflections, Adolf Luther Prize, Krefeld Museum, Krefeld (2004); Our Love is Like the Earth, the Sun the Trees and the Birth, Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver (2003); For 1959 Capital Avenue, Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt (2002); Our Love is Like the Flowers, the Rain, the Sea and the Hours, Tramway, Glasgow (2002); When Now Is Night, Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh (Part of Visions for the Future) (1999).

Boyce recently unveiled a major new commission Remembered Skies at the Tate Britain (2017) as part of the Clore Galleries and is Professor of Sculpture at HFBK, Hamburg. He is represented by The Modern Institute, Glasgow, Tanya Bonakdar, New York, Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Zurich and Esther Schipper, Berlin and currently lives and works in Glasgow.

Notes for Editors:

Mount Stuart is an extraordinary Neo-Gothic mansion on the Island of Bute, sitting between Glasgow, Argyll and Ayrshire on the Firth of Clyde. Since 2001, this unorthodox building has provided both the inspiration and location for an acclaimed visual arts programme.

Through the Visual Arts Programme, Mount Stuart Trust aims to promote and facilitate interest in the contemporary visual arts and bring exhibitions of international standard to Bute and Argyll. Complementing each exhibition is a programme of events, publications and educational activities.

For further information, CV and press images please contact:

Morven Gregor, morven@mountstuart.com

Charlotte Rogers, charlotte@mountstuart.com

This project is supported by the National Lottery through Creative Scotland.

Visit the exhibition during regular opening hours until 3rd November.