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Alan Vega, Infinite Mercy

May 15 - August 2, 2009



The first meeting between the museum and Alan Vega occurred on the occasion of Soundtrack for an Exhibition, presented at the macLYON from March 8th to June 11st 2006. Susan Stenger was composing the soundtrack for the duration of the exhibition, 96 days, while John Armleder was creating the paintings and Kristian Levring producing the films. Susan Stenger calls for various musicians to work on the soundtrack, among them was Alan Vega. That is when the project of presenting more widely the artwork of the electronic rock inventor was born.

Alan Vega, famous for being one of the minimalist electronic rock pioneers, founded with Martin Rev the mythical rock band Suicide in the early 70s. But Alan Vega is above all a visual artist, playing an active part in the New York artistic scene from the end of the 60s. With other artists, he created in 1968 the Project of Living Artists. Located in a Manhattan loft, it is one of the first alternative places hold by artists and opened 24 hours a day. Dedicated to all kind of art, from music to cinema, the gallery became a springboard for many artists, like the bands New York Dolls, Television or Blondie. In this saturated middle, Alan Vega found an ideal climate for his artwork and combined simultaneously his musical and artistic careers. First focused on painting, his work has evolved with the integration of light. The “light sculptures” (assemblies of various objects, mostly light bulbs, lamps, neons of all colours and shapes) were born.

The Museum of Contemporary Art of Lyon (macLYON) offers him his first retrospective. Composed of luminous sculptures and a set of unseen drawings and paintings, it introduces nearly 40 years of production. What's more, Alan Vega will create a monumental luminous installation specially for the occasion.

Website of the artist

Curator

Mathieu Copeland


Independent curator, Mathieu Copeland lives and works in London. Graduated from the Goldsmith College in London in 2003, he tries to question the traditional role of exhibitions. He has been curator of "Soundtrack for an Exhibition" (in collaboration with Alan Vega) at the macLYON (2006) and recently participated in the curatoring of "VIDES. Une Rétrospective" at the Pompidou Center. Since 2003, he published "Perfect Magazine" and he is still director of an artists DVD collection.

www.mathieucopeland.net