Paul McCarthy


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Central Symmetrical Rotation Movement: Three Installations, Two Films

Chrissie Iles

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This is the first publication to explore the role of mirrors, spinning, and “neurotic” architecture––a feeling of psychological breakdown––in the work of one of America’s most important contemporary artists, Paul McCarthy (b. 1945). The book is published in conjunction with a major exhibition at the Whitney, for which McCarthy is creating two new installations to appear alongside his Bang Bang Room (1992) and two recently rediscovered film loops (1966, 1971).


Each work involves a room structure that the viewer can step into and experience—often becoming disoriented as either the floor or entire structure spins, or as walls fold inward and outward. By comparing McCarthy’s use of rotational movement and visual effects to that of other artists of the 1960s and

1970s, the author seeks a new understanding of this bold innovator. An interview with McCarthy himself offers an unprecedented discussion of the influences on his art—including experimental filmmakers Stan Brakhage, Stan Vanderbeek, and Bruce Conner. The book not only raises new points but also recovers information and images from films once lost.

Distributed for the Whitney Museum of American Art

Exhibition Schedule:

Whitney Museum of American Art (June 26 – October 12, 2008)

Chrissie Iles is the Anne and Joel Ehrendranz Curator at the Whitney Museum of American Art.


Whitney Museum of American Art (June 26 – October 12, 2008)

ISBN: 9780300141382
Publication Date: August 1, 2008
Publishing Partner: Distributed for the Whitney Museum of American Art
72 pages, 8 5/8 x 9 1/2
27 b/w + 25 color illus.
Whitney Museum of American Art at Altria

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A Decade in Conversation: A Ten-Year Celebration of The Bucksbaum Award, 2000-2010

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Christian Marclay


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Sharon Hayes

There's So Much I Want to Say to You

Sharon Hayes and Chrissie Iles

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