"I went from being surrounded by things—dealing with how we name them and how we experience our environment through naming—to the opposite end of the spectrum: starting with nothing, then calling the objects into being."
—Matt Mullican, "Planetarium"
For Triple Canopy's tenth issue, And Yet It Moves, Matt Mullican collaborated with computer programmer Patrick Smith to create "Planetarium," a navigable scale model of the solar system. Mullican first experimented with digital environments in 1991, when he made Five into One, a virtual city constructed in accordance with his personal visual vocabulary and cosmological order. Exploring that city, Mullican was transfixed by his ability to leave the earth's surface and travel into nothingness. "I would fly upward," he says, "farther and farther into the sky, beyond the stratosphere, into pure, white, infinite space. I would go on forever, so far away from this city I had created that I couldn't find my way back. I became curious about where, exactly, I was when I was out there, in the middle of nowhere." This experience of unbounded space became a leitmotif in later works. At Artists Space Mullican will present and discuss his many explorations of virtual space—and the strange space between the virtual and the real—and examine their relationship to his iconographic sculptures, prints, and installations, as well as his performances under hypnosis.
- Matt Mullican was born in 1951 and currently resides in Berlin. Working in performance, installation, digital technology, and sculpture, and employing tools ranging from hypnosis to cartography, Mullican seeks to develop a cosmological system based on his personal visual and symbolic vocabulary. His work has been exhibited extensively in the US and internationally.