Matt Mullican

July 27, 2009 to August 22, 2009

The Overlooked Space, Curated by Paul Butler

In this documentation of a 2007 performance, Under Hypnosis, New York and now Berlin-based artist Matt Mullican has recreated his bedroom and studio on stage. Mullican performs while under hypnosis, and his trance state can last up to several hours. During this time he might pour himself coffee, pace the floor, grunt, sing, draw and paint.

Since the 1970s, Mullican has created a complex body of work concerned with systems of knowledge, meaning, language, and signification. In seeking creativity through the unconscious Mullican brings up the work of surrealist artists, who practiced automatic writing and drawing in order to free themselves from the constraints of rational thinking.

Mullican also references performance art of the 1960s and 1970s, including artists such as Bruce Nauman who were interested in language, symbols and signs. Negotiating between the rational and the irrational, Mullican’s work questions both the nature of subjective understanding and the psychological basis of creativity.

The Overlooked Spaceis a display vitrine in the front entrance of Plug In ICA that has been overlooked throughout Plug In’s 12 year occupancy of 286 McDermot. In an effort to participate in discourses surrounding alternative exhibition spaces and models, Plug In has invited guest curator Paul Butler to program this diminutive space.