Incidents by Igor and Svetlana Kopystiansky

Igor and Svetlana Kopystiansky have been working collaboratively on film and video and individually in a wide range of media including sculpture, painting,  photography and installation.

Incidents was filmed over a two-year period on windy streets near the artists’ studio in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan, where the Kopystianskys have lived since 1988. Objects, which they filmed, become objects of art, moving sculptures discovered on streets of the city. These objects meet, interact and render the Duchampian notion of the found object into a playful discourse. A fresh and very common wind from the Hudson River transformed streets into a kind of a stage with actors. The particular formal properties of each of the objects determine the very individualistic movement each character acquires through the animating breath of the wind.

The wind was playing with these objects, turning and twisting them, bringing them together, and then separating them once more. It looks that the wind was liberating them from a power of gravitation.

Incidents highlights the artists’ ongoing concern with the structured observation of urban space, their fascination with abandoned forms from the recent past, and their interest in the spatial and temporal possibilities of cinema.

Works by Igor and Svetlana Kopystiansky are represented in the collections of MoMA New York, Metropolitan Museum, Art Institute of Chicago, Whitney Museum of American Art, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Henry Art Gallery Seattle, Smithsonian American Art Museum Washington D.C., Centre Pompidou, Paris, Tate Modern, London, Museum of Modern Art St. Etienne, MUMOK Vienna, AGNSW Sydney, Folkwang Museum Essen, Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt, Berlinische Galerie, Ludwig Forum Aachen, Centre for Contemporary Art Prato, MOCAK Krakow.

Igor and Svetlana Kopystiansky participated at international exhibitions including Documenta 11,  Sculpture Projects Münster 1997 (Svetlana), Venice Biennial1988 (Aperto curated by Dan Cameron), Construction in Process Lodz, Poland (1990).Sydney Biennial 1992 (curated by Anthony Bond), Sao Paulo Biennial 1994, (curated by Nelson Aguilar), Istanbul Biennial 1995 (curated by René Block), Johannesburg Biennial 1997 (curated by Okwui Enwezor), Lyon Biennial 1997 (curated by Harald Szeemann), Liverpool  Biennial 1999 (curated by Anthony Bond), 9th Triennial of Small Sculpture,” (curated by Jean-Christophe Amman). Fellbach, Germany 2004.

Artists' website

Igor and Svetlana Kopystiansky

Exhibited: “Incidents” (1996/7), 14:56 min video/sound installation and photographic works.

Curator: Maria Morzuch

With support of the Institute für Auslandsbeziehungen (IFA) Stuttgart.

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