Gallery Exhibition Explores Written Art

PARIS.- Gagosian Gallery is presenting "LEXICON," an exhibition of artworks that employ the written word.

A lexicon is a stock or inventory of systematized language, whether personal or belonging to a larger cultural context, which can be shared and deployed.

Since the beginning of recorded history, language and art have collided and intersected. And from the modern era onwards, artists have employed words and language to diverse effect, using writing as both act and subject--in print, light, sculpture, and paint on canvas.

Works in the exhibition include Marcel Broodthaers' Académie I (1968); Alighiero Boetti's embroidered magic word squares (Arazzi) (1977 to 1992); Ed Ruscha's large-scale three-part painting A,B,C(1987); Jenny Holzer's stone agit, Selections from the Living Series (Bench #9) (1989); Douglas Gordon's text work for a television monitor, A Moment's silence (for someone close to you) (1998); Jean-Michel Basquiat's cultural cryptograms; and Cy Twombly's abstruse and airy scratchings.

Lawrence Weiner has created a new site-responsive version of AT THE SAME MOMENT (2000) for the rue de Ponthieu gallery, and Piero Golia has designed a printed wallpaper especially for the exhibition.

Language and art have never lived too far away from one another: concrete poetry, propaganda, graffiti, and Pop art, among other genres, testify to their dynamic interplay over time. "LEXICON" presents a gathering of examples from artists who have made language and letters into what poet William Carlos Williams would have referred to as "the thing itself": language becoming physical object.

The exhibition will include works by Carl Andre, Giovanni Anselmo, Julien Audebert, Robert Barry, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Alighiero Boetti, Joe Bradley, Marcel Broodthaers, Robert Filliou, John Giorno, Robert Gober, Piero Golia, Douglas Gordon, Loris Gréaud, Damien Hirst, Jenny Holzer, Emilio Isgrò, Neil Jenney, Jasper Johns, Joseph Kosuth, Barbara Kruger, Claude Lévêque, Glenn Ligon, Adam McEwen, Sarah Morris, Albert Oehlen, Nam June Paik, Steven Parrino, Richard Prince, Sterling Ruby, Ed Ruscha, Cy Twombly, and Lawrence Weiner.

Photo above : Nam June Paik, Untitled, 1998 (detail). Acrylic paint on canvas, 67 x 46 inches 170.2 x 116.8 cm. © Nam June Paik Estate. Photo by Ben Blackwell. Courtesy Gagosian Gallery