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Chris Burden

Chris Burden, Shoot, 1971 Performance at F Space, Santa Ana, California, November 19, 1971© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Shoot, 1971

Performance at F Space, Santa Ana, California, November 19, 1971
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Bed Piece, 1972 Performance at 72 Market Street, Venice, California, February 18–March 10, 1972© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Bed Piece, 1972

Performance at 72 Market Street, Venice, California, February 18–March 10, 1972
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, 747, 1973 Performance at Los Angeles, January 5, 1973© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, 747, 1973

Performance at Los Angeles, January 5, 1973
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Sex Tower (Architectural Model of 125 Foot High Sex Tower), 1976 Cement, wood, metal screws, and gold leaf, 133 ½ × 36 ¼ × 37 ¾ inches (339.1 × 92.1 × 95.9 cm)© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Sex Tower (Architectural Model of 125 Foot High Sex Tower), 1976

Cement, wood, metal screws, and gold leaf, 133 ½ × 36 ¼ × 37 ¾ inches (339.1 × 92.1 × 95.9 cm)
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Thank You, 1979 Black-and-white photograph, color photograph, nail, gold foil, fabric, painted paper collage, and felt-tip pen on board, 32 × 40 inches (81.3 × 101.6 cm)© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Thank You, 1979

Black-and-white photograph, color photograph, nail, gold foil, fabric, painted paper collage, and felt-tip pen on board, 32 × 40 inches (81.3 × 101.6 cm)
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Breakthrough, 1982 Printed paper collage, plastic, and aluminum dog tag on paper, 31 ½ × 39 ½ inches (80 × 100.3 cm)© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Breakthrough, 1982

Printed paper collage, plastic, and aluminum dog tag on paper, 31 ½ × 39 ½ inches (80 × 100.3 cm)
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Scale Model of the Solar System, 1983 Plastic, steel ball bearings, plexiglass, dimensions variable, installed at Contemporary Art Center, New Orleans, February 25–March 27, 1983© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Scale Model of the Solar System, 1983

Plastic, steel ball bearings, plexiglass, dimensions variable, installed at Contemporary Art Center, New Orleans, February 25–March 27, 1983
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, L.A.P.D. Uniform, 1993 Fabric, leather, wood, metal, and plastic, 88 × 72 × 6 inches (223.5 × 182.9 × 15.2 cm), edition of 30© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, L.A.P.D. Uniform, 1993

Fabric, leather, wood, metal, and plastic, 88 × 72 × 6 inches (223.5 × 182.9 × 15.2 cm), edition of 30
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, The Flying Steamroller, 1996 Steel, concrete, and 1968 Huber road grader, 21 feet × 56 feet 6 inches × 56 feet 6 inches (6.4 × 17.2 × 17.2 m), installed at MAK—Österreichisches Museum für angewandte Kunst/Gegenwartskunst, Vienna, February 28–August 4, 1996© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, The Flying Steamroller, 1996

Steel, concrete, and 1968 Huber road grader, 21 feet × 56 feet 6 inches × 56 feet 6 inches (6.4 × 17.2 × 17.2 m), installed at MAK—Österreichisches Museum für angewandte Kunst/Gegenwartskunst, Vienna, February 28–August 4, 1996
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Tower of London Bridge, 2003 Stainless steel reproduction Mysto Type I Erector parts, gearbox, and wood base, 28 ¼ × 80 ¼ × 8 ½ (71.8 × 203.8 × 21.6 cm), edition of 6 + 3 AP© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Tower of London Bridge, 2003

Stainless steel reproduction Mysto Type I Erector parts, gearbox, and wood base, 28 ¼ × 80 ¼ × 8 ½ (71.8 × 203.8 × 21.6 cm), edition of 6 + 3 AP
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, The Rant, 2006 DVD, color, sound, 2:10 minutes, edition of 10© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, The Rant, 2006

DVD, color, sound, 2:10 minutes, edition of 10
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, 65 Foot High Skyscraper, Angled View & Front View, 2008 Ink on paper, in 2 parts, overall: 19 ⅛ × 24 ⅝ inches (48.6 × 62.5 cm)© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, 65 Foot High Skyscraper, Angled View & Front View, 2008

Ink on paper, in 2 parts, overall: 19 ⅛ × 24 ⅝ inches (48.6 × 62.5 cm)
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, What My Dad Gave Me, 2008 Approximately 1,000 stainless steel reproduction Mysty Type I Erector parts, nuts, and bolts, 65 feet × 11 feet 2 inches × 11 feet 3 inches (19.8 × 3.4 × 3.4 m), installed at Rockefeller Plaza, New York, June 11, 2008–July 19, 2008© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Erich Koyama

Chris Burden, What My Dad Gave Me, 2008

Approximately 1,000 stainless steel reproduction Mysty Type I Erector parts, nuts, and bolts, 65 feet × 11 feet 2 inches × 11 feet 3 inches (19.8 × 3.4 × 3.4 m), installed at Rockefeller Plaza, New York, June 11, 2008–July 19, 2008
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Erich Koyama

Chris Burden, Metropolis II, 2006–10 3 hp DC motors with motor controllers, 1080 custom manufactured die-cast cars, HO-scale train sets with controllers and tracks, steel, aluminum, shielded copper wire, copper sheet, brass, various plastics, assorted woods and manufactured wood products, Legos, Lincoln Logs, Dado Cubes, glass, ceramic and natural stone tiles, acrylic and oil-base paints, rubber, and sundry adhesives, 117 × 339 × 230 inches (297 × 861 × 584 cm)© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Metropolis II, 2006–10

3 hp DC motors with motor controllers, 1080 custom manufactured die-cast cars, HO-scale train sets with controllers and tracks, steel, aluminum, shielded copper wire, copper sheet, brass, various plastics, assorted woods and manufactured wood products, Legos, Lincoln Logs, Dado Cubes, glass, ceramic and natural stone tiles, acrylic and oil-base paints, rubber, and sundry adhesives, 117 × 339 × 230 inches (297 × 861 × 584 cm)
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Urban Light, 2008 202 fully restored Los Angeles cast-iron streetlamps from the 1920s (17 styles of lamps that have been sandblasted, painted, and electrified), 26 feet 8 ½ inches × 57 feet 2 ½ inches × 58 feet 8 ½ inches (8.1 × 17.4 × 17.9 m), permanent installation at Los Angeles County Museum of Art© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Museum Associates/LACMA

Chris Burden, Urban Light, 2008

202 fully restored Los Angeles cast-iron streetlamps from the 1920s (17 styles of lamps that have been sandblasted, painted, and electrified), 26 feet 8 ½ inches × 57 feet 2 ½ inches × 58 feet 8 ½ inches (8.1 × 17.4 × 17.9 m), permanent installation at Los Angeles County Museum of Art
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Museum Associates/LACMA

Chris Burden, Holmby Hills Light Folly, 2012 4 Holmby Hills cast-iron streetlamps from the 1920s, fully restored and electrified, and 4 cast-iron benches, 168 × 168 × 168 inches (426.7 × 426.7 × 426.7 cm), installed at Parcours Art Basel, June 19–22, 2014© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: J. Searles

Chris Burden, Holmby Hills Light Folly, 2012

4 Holmby Hills cast-iron streetlamps from the 1920s, fully restored and electrified, and 4 cast-iron benches, 168 × 168 × 168 inches (426.7 × 426.7 × 426.7 cm), installed at Parcours Art Basel, June 19–22, 2014
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: J. Searles

Chris Burden, Porsche with Meteorite, 2013 Restored 1974 Porsche 914, 390-pound meteorite, and steel structure© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Brian Forrest

Chris Burden, Porsche with Meteorite, 2013

Restored 1974 Porsche 914, 390-pound meteorite, and steel structure
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Brian Forrest

Chris Burden, Three Arch Dry Stack Bridge, 1/4 Scale, 2013 974 hand-cast concrete blocks and wood, 46 × 332 ½ × 21 inches (116.8 × 844.6 × 53.3 cm)© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Thomas Lannes

Chris Burden, Three Arch Dry Stack Bridge, 1/4 Scale, 2013

974 hand-cast concrete blocks and wood, 46 × 332 ½ × 21 inches (116.8 × 844.6 × 53.3 cm)
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Thomas Lannes

Chris Burden, Buddha’s Fingers, 2014–15 32 antique cast-iron streelamps, 142 × 108 × 108 inches (360.6 × 274.3 × 274.3 cm), installed at Gagosian, 980 Madison Avenue, New York, January 19–March 12, 2016© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Rob McKeever

Chris Burden, Buddha’s Fingers, 2014–15

32 antique cast-iron streelamps, 142 × 108 × 108 inches (360.6 × 274.3 × 274.3 cm), installed at Gagosian, 980 Madison Avenue, New York, January 19–March 12, 2016
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Rob McKeever

Chris Burden, Ode to Santos-Dumont, 2015 7075 aircraft aluminum reproduction Erector parts, carbon fiber drive shaft, fiberglass propeller, nylon cable, hand tooled 1:4 scale replica of 1903 gasoline motor, polyurethane balloon, 1300 cubic feet of helium, dimensions variable, installed at Los Angeles County Museum of Art, May 18–June 21, 2015© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Chris Burden, Ode to Santos-Dumont, 2015

7075 aircraft aluminum reproduction Erector parts, carbon fiber drive shaft, fiberglass propeller, nylon cable, hand tooled 1:4 scale replica of 1903 gasoline motor, polyurethane balloon, 1300 cubic feet of helium, dimensions variable, installed at Los Angeles County Museum of Art, May 18–June 21, 2015
© 2018 Chris Burden/Licensed by the Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

About

“Limits” is a relative term. Like beauty, it is often in the eye of the beholder.
—Chris Burden

From his action-based works of the 1970s to the jaw-dropping technical feats of his later sculptures, Chris Burden (1946–2015) consistently challenged his mental and physical limitations, reflecting on the surreal and precarious realities of contemporary life. Burden was a radical and uncompromising figure with a fierce political consciousness.

Burden earned his MFA in 1971 from the University of California, Irvine, where he studied under the conceptual artist Robert Irwin. Like Irwin—whose site-specific architectural interventions consider the effects of space and light on the viewer—Burden was interested in the staging of spectacle and the ways in which art could complicate one’s understanding of the material world. In his early performances Burden responded to the violent realities of the Vietnam War by putting his body at risk. For Five Day Locker Piece (1971), he locked himself into a school locker, drinking water from a five-gallon bottle stored in the locker above and urinating into a five-gallon bottle in the locker below. That same year, for Shoot, Burden’s friend shot him in the left arm from a distance of fifteen feet. The piece, which lasted only about eight seconds, was recorded on Super-8 film.

In the late 1970s Burden turned to monumental sculpture, considering how the scale and placement of public infrastructure could be manipulated in order to explore the implications of power, speed, and balance. In 1979 he created The Big Wheel, a kinetic work composed of a 1968 Benelli motorcycle placed on a wooden frame and attached to a nineteenth-century metal flywheel. When the bike is mounted and revved, the flywheel is set into motion.

This industrial thrill continued in the 1980s and 1990s with Beam Drop (1984/2008)—a work that involved dropping I beams from a crane into a large pit of wet concrete—and Medusa’s Head (1990), an amorphous mass of wood, steel, cement, rock, and model railroad trains and tracks, evocative of a country-sized chunk of earth that has been extracted and squished into a ball. Beam Drop was re-created in 2008 at the Inhotim Institute in Brazil, where its final, sculptural product is now permanently installed, while Medusa’s Head is held in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

In 2000 Burden began collecting street lamps from the 1920s and 1930s, once used in residential neighborhoods of Los Angeles, and repurposing them as sculptural installations. This led to his celebrated permanent installation Urban Light (2008), comprising 202 lampposts, at the entrance to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Starting in 2003, Burden also constructed large-scale models of bridges—both real and imagined—with thousands of toy construction parts. Tower of London Bridge (2003) mimics every aspect of the famous bridge’s suspension design, including the functional drawbridge, and Three Arch Dry Stack Bridge, 1/4 Scale (2013)—first exhibited in Extreme Measures (2013–14), a major survey of Burden’s work at the New Museum in New York—comprises three elegant arches made of hand-cast concrete blocks held together by gravity.

Burden’s last completed work, Ode to Santos Dumont (2015), is a kinetic airship modeled after Alberto Santos-Dumont’s 1901 dirigible that flew around the Eiffel Tower. Built over a ten-year period, it achieves indoor flight in fifteen-minute intervals and simultaneously embodies both ambitions of industrial invention and reveries of childhood marvels. The first artist to be represented by Larry Gagosian, beginning in 1978.

Chris Burden

Photo: Malerie Marder

From the Quarterly

Fairs, Events & Announcements

William Forsythe, Lectures from Improvisation Technologies, 2011, performed by William Forsythe © William Forsythe

Book Fair

NY Art Book Fair
William Forsythe

September 21–23, 2018, project space room, booth S202
MoMA PS1, New York
www.nyartbookfair.com

Gagosian is participating in the NY Art Book Fair 2018 with a special project space conceived in collaboration with choreographer William Forsythe, exploring visual and notational approaches to dance and movement. Forsythe is a radical innovator in choreography and dance who has redefined the very syntax and praxis of his field. In the course of his singular career spanning five decades, he has developed an extensive repertoire of groundbreaking ballet choreographies and experimental, non-proscenium-based dance-theater works, as well as an open-access digital platform for dance analysis, notation, and improvisation.

At the NYABF, printed materials and videos by Forsythe are featured alongside selected Gagosian publications, as well as additional books and ephemera that reveal Forsythe’s wide-ranging influences and interests including Chris Burden, Katharina Grosse, Richard Serra, Cy Twombly, and Rachel Whiteread.

William Forsythe, Lectures from Improvisation Technologies, 2011, performed by William Forsythe © William Forsythe

Ed Ruscha, Even Though He’s Light Years Away, His Heart Belongs to Me, 1963 © Ed Ruscha

Art Fair

Seattle Art Fair

August 2–5, 2018, booth A09
CenturyLink Field Event Center, Seattle
www.seattleartfair.com

Gagosian is pleased to present Out of This World: Artists Explore Space, a booth curated by Larry Gagosian for the 2018 Seattle Art Fair. The presentation gathers works that reveal artistic and scientific explorations of the cosmos. Featured artists include Richard Avedon, Andisheh Avini, Chris Burden, Alexander Calder, Vija Celmins, Ellen Gallagher, Andreas Gursky, Damien Hirst, Neil Jenney, Mike Kelley, Yves Klein, Vera Lutter, Brice Marden, Marc Newson, Nam June Paik, Thomas Ruff, Ed Ruscha, Tom Sachs, Taryn Simon, Yves Tanguy, and Andy Warhol, among others.

To receive a PDF with detailed information on the works, please contact the gallery at inquire@gagosian.com. To attend the fair, purchase tickets at seattleartfair.com.

Ed Ruscha, Even Though He’s Light Years Away, His Heart Belongs to Me, 1963 © Ed Ruscha

John Chamberlain, Untitled, 1993 © 2018 Fairweather & Fairweather LTD/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Art Fair

Zona Maco

February 7–11, 2018, booth F201
Centro Citibanamex, Mexico City
www.zsonamaco.com

Gagosian is pleased to participate in Zona Maco México Arte Contemporáneo 2018, presenting works by Chris Burden, John Chamberlain, Dan Colen, Frank Gehry, Piero Golia, Douglas Gordon, Katharina Grosse, Adam McEwen, Takashi Murakami, Albert Oehlen, Giuseppe Penone, Pablo Picasso, Richard Prince, Sterling Ruby, Ed Ruscha, Jenny Saville, Rudolf Stingel, Robert Therrien, Blair Thurman, Adriana Varejão, Jeff Wall, Andy Warhol, and Tom Wesselmann. If you wish to receive a PDF with detailed information on the works, please contact us at losangeles@gagosian.com. Tickets are available at www.zsonamaco.com.

John Chamberlain, Untitled, 1993 © 2018 Fairweather & Fairweather LTD/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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Museum Exhibitions

Chris Burden, All the Submarines of the United States of America, 1987 © Chris Burden/licensed by The Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Benoit Pailley

Opening Soon

Unsettled

October 27, 2018–April 30, 2019
Palm Springs Art Museum, California
www.psmuseum.org

Unsettled, cocurated by JoAnne Northrup and Ed Ruscha, amasses two hundred artworks by eighty artists spanning two thousand years to explore the geography of frontiers characterized by vast expanses of open land, rich natural resources, diverse indigenous peoples, colonialism, and the ongoing conflicts that inevitably arise when these factors coexist. This exhibition originated at the Nevada Museum of Art, Reno. Work by Chris Burden and Ed Ruscha is included.

Chris Burden, All the Submarines of the United States of America, 1987 © Chris Burden/licensed by The Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Benoit Pailley

Ed Ruscha, Rancho, 1968 © Ed Ruscha

Closed

Unsettled

April 20–September 9, 2018
Anchorage Museum, Alaska
www.anchoragemuseum.org

Unsettled, co-curated by JoAnne Northrup and Ed Ruscha, amasses two hundred artworks by eighty artists spanning two thousand years to explore the geography of frontiers characterized by vast expanses of open land, rich natural resources, diverse indigenous peoples, colonialism, and the ongoing conflicts that inevitably arise when these factors coexist. This exhibition traveled from the Nevada Museum of Art. Work by Chris Burden and Ed Ruscha is included.

Ed Ruscha, Rancho, 1968 © Ed Ruscha

Jeff Koons, Rabbit, 1986 © Jeff Koons.Photo by Nathan Keay © MCA Chicago

Closed

We Are Here

August 19, 2017–April 1, 2018
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago
mcachicago.org

In honor of the Museum of Contemporary Art’s fiftieth anniversary, the museum presents We Are Here, a three-part exhibition drawn from its collection. I Am You gathers works that question how we relate to and shape our environments; You Are Here examines how the role of the viewer has changed over time; and We Are Everywhere showcases artists who borrow from popular culture. Work by Richard Artschwager, Francis Bacon, Chris Burden, Ellen Gallagher, Andreas Gursky, Michael Heizer, Jasper Johns, Jeff Koons, Takashi Murakami, Bruce Nauman, Richard Serra, Cindy Sherman, Rudolf Stingel, Andy Warhol, and Franz West is included.

Jeff Koons, Rabbit, 1986 © Jeff Koons.
Photo by Nathan Keay © MCA Chicago

Ed Ruscha, Lost Empires, Living Tribes, 1984, Marciano Collection, Los Angeles

Closed

Unsettled

August 26, 2017–January 21, 2018
Nevada Museum of Art
www.nevadaart.org

Unsettled, co-curated by JoAnne Northrup and Ed Ruscha, amasses two hundred artworks by eighty artists spanning two thousand years to explore the geography of frontiers characterized by vast expanses of open land, rich natural resources, diverse indigenous peoples, colonialism, and the ongoing conflicts that inevitably arise when these factors coexist. Work by Chris Burden and Ed Ruscha is included.

Ed Ruscha, Lost Empires, Living Tribes, 1984, Marciano Collection, Los Angeles

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Press

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