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FRAC Lorraine presents Doug Wheeler’s news luminous installations

49 Nord 6 Est FRAC Lorraine presents Doug Wheeler’s news luminous installations, on view May 24–November 11, 2012.

Since the 1960s, the famous artist has been unhinging our senses and guiding us to inhabit moments of liminality, instants of suspension in pure light. His spaces appeal not only to the retina but also to the body as a whole, and thus invite us to an approach both initiatory and meditative.

Doug Wheeler, 68 VEN MCASD 11, 1968/2011. Exhibition view Phenomenal: California Light, Space, Surface. Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego. September 24, 2011–January 22, 2012. Photo by Philipp Scholz Rittermann. Copyright 2012 Doug Wheeler.

For his first solo exhibition in Europe since 1975, the artist has created two new phosphorescent pieces, in addition to conceiving a new perceptual environment in his famed series of “light walls.” His immersive environments subtly absorb the viewer and provoke a unique experience, which does not engage reason but is addressed directly to the body, through all the senses.

A poet of light, Doug Wheeler creates atmospheres of a rare sensuality. He challenges our perception of depth and volume, even while our bodies, clothed in light, dissolve in the white space that has grown infinite. It is a question then of exploring the very substance of light and of provoking unprecedented sensorial perceptions.

Doug Wheeler
Born in 1939 in Globe, Arizona. Works in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Santa Monica, California.
Beginning as a painter, the artist moved on to making light encasements, before abandoning object-making in the mid-60s to work entirely with architectural space and light. In 1969, at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, he created his first environmental installation in a public space, a “light wall.”
His work was subsequently presented in numerous exhibitions, notably: in 1970 at the Tate Gallery in London and the Schmela Gallery in Dusseldorf; at the Salvatore Ala Gallery in Milan in 1975; at MoMa PS1 in New York in 1976; at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles in 1986; in 2000 at the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain.

In 2008, he created an environmental installation using ice and neon as part of his design for the exhibition Upside Down—Les Arctiques at the Quai Branly Museum in Paris. He collaborated with the noted French architect Jean de Gastines on the scenography. In 2011, as part of the Pacific Standard Time initiative, he created a site-specific light environment at the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego for the exhibition Phenomenal: California Light, Space, Surface. He inaugurated a solo exhibition, entitled SA MI 75 DZ 12, at the David Zwirner Gallery in New York in January 2012.

Special thanks to David Zwirner, New York (US).

This exhibition is part of MONO, an original cross-border initiative by fifteen modern and contemporary art venues in France, Luxembourg, and Germany. Between June 1 and September 2, 2012, the collaborating venues will simultaneously present solo exhibitions by contemporary artists.

49 Nord 6 Est
FRAC Lorraine
1bis rue des Trinitaires
F-57000 Metz, France
Hours: Tuesday–Friday 2–7pm
Saturday & Sunday 11–7pm
Admission free

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