Jean-Pierre Gauthier, Rut (Rut), 2004 (detail), Sound installation, 15 x 4 x 23 ft., Collection of the Musee d'art contemporain de Montreal, Photo: Richard-Max Tremblay.

Jean-Pierre Gauthier: Machines at Play

September 27, 2008 - January 4, 2009
Karl and Bertl Arnstein Galleries
***Watch the installation via WEBCAM!***

Montréal artist, inventor and musician Jean-Pierre Gauthier brings humor and poetry to his kinetic sculptural installations. This exhibition, the first survey of the award-winning artist’s work, will make its exclusive U.S. appearance at the Akron Art Museum.

Gauthier ingeniously transforms electrical cable, funnels, pulleys and other industrial and everyday objects into living, moving, singing organisms. His dynamic installations invoke the opposing forces of order and chaos, permanence and fragility. Each work invites the viewer to experience and interact with its visual, sound, and moving parts.

Among the works featured in the exhibition is Beats and Butterflies, a spectacular glistening piano that plays when viewers move through the room. Gauthier in fact views all of his materials as instruments. In Rut, motors, wires, microphones, mixing boards and amplifiers are set in motion to create mesmerizing rhythmic and auditory movements. The seemingly jumbled network of conduits is in fact a highly orchestrated mechanism that creates a multi-sensory experience of space and time.

Born in 1965 in Matane (Quebec Province), Gauthier has lived and worked in Montréal since 1986. Jean-Pierre Gauthier: Machines at Play is comprised of artwork made from 2002 to the present.

First time ever: installation process is open to the public
The public is invited to learn the secrets that make these complex sculptures come alive by watching Gauthier and his team install in the Arnstein Galleries at the Akron Art Museum. The galleries will be open throughout the installation during regular museum hours from September 17 - 21 and September 23 - 26. Note: The team may take occasional breaks during the installation process.

Another first for the museum is a collaboration with Western Reserve PBS (formerly PBS 45/49) to broadcast the installation via both webcam and television broadcasts. The webcam and corresponding blog will be available on the musuem's website as well as Western Reserve PBS'. Tune in to Western Reserve PBS on Friday, September 26 at 8:30 pm for the first broadcast. Additional programs will air on Saturday, September 28 at 8 pm and Saturday, October 4 at 3:30 pm. This collaboration is made possible by a generous gift from the Summa Foundation.

Jean-Pierre Gauthier: Machines at Play is organized and circulated by the Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal, a provincially owned corporation funded by the Ministère de la Culture, des Communications et de la Condition féminine du Québec.

This exhibition is made possible by a generous gift from the Ohio Arts Council and The Mary and Dr. George L. Demetros Charitable Trust with additional support from Lockheed Martin Corporation, The Mirapaul Foundation, Karl and Gayle Galan Reuther and Haltec Corporation.

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