In Detail: Philippe Parreno’s H {N)Y P N(Y} OSIS - Time

In Detail: Philippe Parreno’s H {N)Y P N(Y} OSIS

by Roxana Fabius & Elizabeth Larison, Curatorial Assistants

If there’s one thing to remember in planning a visit to H {N)Y P N(Y} OSIS, it is to allow adequate time for the experience. Not only has the exhibition itself has been designed to evolve over a set period of time, it has been specially conceived to draw out and confound the experience of time that is spent within it.

This desire to play with time is expressed within one prominent aspect of the exhibition: Danny The Street (2015), the alleyway of suspended theater marquees that delineate the layout of the exhibition. The form of the marquee is more than just a luminous muse for Philippe Parreno, who has been making these sculptures since 2006. He came to them by way of researching the relationship between the time museum-goers spend in front of an artwork and the length of its accompanying title card. After finding that longer descriptive texts and labels correlate with more time spent with the artwork they referenced, Parreno began experimenting with the label-as-artwork. This idea eventually led him to the theater marquee as a form. In many ways it is the ultimate, three-dimensional, flashing label that is often itself a sight to be seen, and an expression of Parreno’s desire to captivate the attentions of those who attend his exhibitions.

To fulfill the purpose of the marquees, time is designed to feel altered within the exhibition space. Notably, the marquees themselves lack their characteristic date, time, and featured event; the light in the Wade Thompson Drill Hall shifts from abyssal night to the natural brightness of day; the dates in Parreno’s films vary and are further confounded by the revelation that they are automated restagings, orchestrated reenactments. This, combined with exhibition’s pairing of the aging Drill Hall and Parreno’s stylized interpretation of theater marquees makes all times feel present.

The only reprieve from these moments of time distortion are the apparent pauses in the exhibition itself, where, suddenly without spectacular distraction, we are reminded not only of where we are, but when we are.

Image: Philippe Parreno, Danny The Street (detail), 2015; Photo: James Ewing

Return to H {N)Y P N(Y} OSIS

Return to Arts at the Armory Listing  

Buy Tickets

June 11–August 2

Tuesday–Thursday: 12:00pm–8:00pm
Friday: 12:00pm–10:00pm
Saturday–Sunday: 11:00am–7:00pm

Wade Thompson Drill Hall
Tickets: $15
Free for Armory members

Subscribe now and save up to 20%


Other ways to buy:
Phone M-F 10am - 6pm (212) 933-5812

Be the first to know about ticket sales and Armory Events by joining our Mailing List.

2015 Season Sponsors: