“An exhibition of an artist who died more than twenty years ago represents an approach to the notion of the new that is somewhat different from the Museum’s standard—one that emphasizes relevance and fresh information over chronology, and brings to the fore a relatively neglected yet very influential innovator who continues to have a strong impact on artists working today,” said Laura Hoptman.
In 1959, Gysin created the Cut-Up Method, in which words and phrases were literally cut up into pieces and then rearranged to untether them from their received meanings and reveal new ones. His Cut-Up experiments, which he shared with his lifelong friend and collaborator William S. Burroughs, culminated in Burroughs and Gysin’s The Third Mind, a book-length collage manifesto on the Cut-Up Method and its uses. Transferring this notion to experimenting with tape-recorded poems manipulated by a computer algorithm, Gysin created sound poetry and was among the earliest users of the computer in art. At the same creative moment, Gysin conceived of the Dreamachine. During the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s, Gysin would continue his collaborations, and prove to be a mentor for myriad artists, poets, and musicians, from John Giorno to Brian Jones, to David Bowie and Patti Smith, to Genesis Breyer P-Orridge and Keith Haring, among many others.
“Brion Gysin: Dream Machine” will be accompanied by an illustrated catalogue co-published with Hugh Merrell, Ltd., featuring essays by Laura Hoptman; John Geiger, literary scholar and author of the definitive Gysin biography; Gerard Audinet, Chief Curator of the Musée d’art moderne de la ville de Paris, which houses Gysin’s artistic estate; James Grauerholz, Gysin’s friend and literary executor; as well as appreciations by contemporary artists, musicians, and poets including George Condo, Paul Elliman, Ugo Rondinone, Rirkrit Tiravanija, Cerith Wyn Evans, Shannon Ebner, Trisha Donnelly, and Sue de Beer.
New York, NY 10002
Banner image: Bryon Gysin with Dreamachine at Musée des Art Décoratifs, Paris, 1962. © Harold Chapman/Topham/The Image Works