Alicja Kwade: In Between Glances: MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge, MA, USA

18 October 2019 - 5 January 2020 

The MIT List Visual Arts Center is pleased to announce a solo exhibition with Berlin-based artist Alicja Kwade. Working primarily in sculpture and installation, Kwade explores structures of reality such as time and space, as well as systems of value, that determine how we perceive the world and decide what constitutes the real. Alicja Kwade: In Between Glances will be on view October 18, 2019–January 5, 2019.


Kwade is best known for her sculptural works which use common, yet symbolically resonant materials like rocks, lamps, and clocks. Typically working in a site-specific mode, viewers encounter these and other found objects transformed by the artist to mysterious effect. Her alchemical treatment of familiar things complicates, and at times casts suspicion on, our perceptual faculties. Roadside pebbles are cut and polished like precious gems. Normally obdurate building materials droop and sag. Clocks run backwards, perpetually out of time.


For the List Center exhibition, Kwade will realize a newly commissioned work comprising a group of large-scale, stainless-steel spherical rings, presented alongside a focused selection of recent sculptures. Trans-For-Men 11 (Fibonacci) (2019) employs mirrors and geometric forms made from various natural materials to visualize the mathematical principle known as the Fibonacci sequence. A recent series of sculptures is composed of household appliances and personal technology devices that have been ground down to a fine dust and reconstituted as urns, bowls, and vases. With deadpan titles like Lamp (2016) and iPhone (2017), indicating their previous form and utility, the uncanny vessels are presented in glass vitrines typically used for museum display. Against the Run (2019), a functional clock with a backwards-running dial, will be sited outside the galleries on a plaza adjacent to the List Center. Here, and throughout her work, Kwade strategically blurs received distinctions between past and present, fact and fiction, and high and low value. In doing so, her works evince a persistent inquiry into the scientific, economic, and narrative principles that structure how we understand and interpret the world around us.



Alicja Kwade: In Between Glances is organized by Henriette Huldisch, Director of Exhibitions & Curator, MIT List Visual Arts Center.


The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalog produced in collaboration with Dallas Contemporary. Published and distributed by Mousse Publishing, the book will feature installation photography from both the List Center and Dallas Contemporary solo exhibitions, and contributions by historian of science Jimena Canales and others.