user, space Installation View, 2016, Yuri Pattison. Photos by Andy Keate, courtesy the artist, mother’s tankstation limited, Helga Maria Klosterfelde, Labor, and Chisenhale Gallery
A recent study estimates that 40% of the American workforce will be freelance by 2020. This new normal isn’t limited to the United States, as it’s a situation London-based artist and Frieze Artist Award winner Yuri Pattison explores in a new solo exhibition at Chisenhale Gallery. user, space, fills up the entire gallery space and is made of a series of industrial racking equipped with interconnected computers that control the space’s light. Film-covered windows as well as a series of LEDs are constantly switched on and off to create Pattison’s custom interpretation of the workday.
Viewers are invited to work within this exhibition-turned-workspace. Due to the manipulation of the space’s light and the resulting manipulation of the circadian rhythms of visitors, day and night become accelerated representations, highlighting the increasingly blurred lines between life and work within society. The result is a workspace that is too quick and too efficient to keep up with; the workday is inevitably terminated before you finish your own endeavor.
The exhibition user, space is a result of Pattison’s 18-month residency at Chisenhale. Throughout the residency, Pattison frequently engaged with east London’s Tech City, the English counterpart to Silicon Valley, having dialogs with work collectives for creative companies, and Campus London, a workspace for startup companies by Google.
“Throughout the residency, Yuri became increasingly aware of the aesthetic decisions made within these spaces and was interested in how start-up companies often draw on the aesthetics of historical speculative environments and employ values of progress and transparency for enhanced productivity,” says Emma Moore, a curator at Chisenhale Gallery.
Within the workspace installation, Pattison has also introduced a few supplementary elements like a bitcoin mining rig and a series of videos depicting other new workspaces, enveloping the viewer in a rhythm of continuous workflow.