Neon and green fluorescent lights: Bruce Nauman exhibition at Hauser & Wirth, London


I enjoyed this free Bruce Nauman exhibition at the Hauser & Wirth gallery in upmarket Savile Row, Mayfair London on the weekend.


Naughtily entitled ‘Mindfuck,’ the exhibition features several striking pieces, including this disorienting large neon work which sporadically flashed like a rave strobe light.

Bruce Nauman exhibition at Hauser & Wirth, London

Sex and Death/Double “69”, 1985.


Made from stainless steel, cast aluminium and polyurethane foam with an electric motor sending various animal objects dragging around the floor, this piece is called ‘carousel (stainless steel version)’, 1988.

I didn’t quite get the point of this one.


This was my favourite piece. Accessible through two corridors that grew ever narrower, only the slimmest of folks could gain entry.


Bruce Nauman exhibition at Hauser & Wirth, London

The room was bathed in deeply unflattering green fluorescent light that was rather unpleasant to stand under.


The exit on the opposite side of the room. We liked this room so much we squeezed back in twice!


We managed to catch the last day of the exhibition so if you’re reading this now you’ve missed it, but you can read more about the show here.

Here’s what Time Out thought of it:

But his work isn’t just psychological, it’s also powerfully physical. The corridors of his untitled 1971 construction narrow aggressively around you as you enter. The claustrophobic tightening of walls makes you so aware of your body and the space it inhabits that you’re left tense with the emotional and physical discomfort of your own form. You suck your stomach in, hold your breath and squeeze through the funnelled opening to find yourself in an empty room that’s vibrating under the harsh green neon glare of four strip lights….

For the most part, Nauman’s work is a disorientating and energising experience. The corridor piece is singularly oppressive. The neon works are so obtrusive, so eye-wateringly confrontational, that they’re almost exhausting. This isn’t easy or subtle art. It’s a total Mindfuck.

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