Cristin Tierney Gallery presents Mary Lucier at Frieze Masters, London, October 14-16, 2022

Visual Arts

Mary Lucier
Paris Dawn Burn
Frieze Masters, Spotlight Section
Regent’s Park, London

October 14-16, 2022
Preview Days: October 12-13, 2022

Cristin Tierney Gallery is delighted to show Mary Lucier’s video installation Paris Dawn Burn at Frieze Masters in October. This special presentation will take place in the Spotlight section of the fair in Regent’s Park. Frieze Masters opens with preview days on October 12th and 13th and continues through Sunday the 16th.

American artist Mary Lucier is a video art pioneer highly regarded since the 1970s for her multi monitor, multi-channel video installations. Her historic work Paris Dawn Burn was created for the 1978 Paris Biennale and has not been shown since a subsequent 1978 exhibition at The Kitchen in New York. Paris Dawn Burn consists of seven 30-minute videos of sunrises displayed on seven black-and-white CRT monitors of ascending sizes. The monitors sit in a custom-designed, arced structure, and the large-scale installation is completed by a keystoned color slide projection on the rear wall of a still image taken at the same location and time as the videos.

The videos were recorded from a fifth-floor balcony of the Cité des Arts in Paris between August 31 – September 10, 1977. For each tape, Lucier filmed the sunrise over Paris from the same position, slowly zooming in while also panning east from the Centre Pompidou to the dome of St. Paul’s in le Marais. The work was inspired in part by the number one rule of video-making at the time: never point a camera at the sun. Lucier purposefully broke that rule with Paris Dawn Burn, and as the sun rises each day it burns a black mark on the camera’s vidicon tube.


By the end of the last video, seven black marks appear in the image, representing the cumulative positions of the sun during filming. The work imagines the landscape as a metaphor for loss and regeneration. Each day the image becomes increasingly covered in burns, but the dawn still appears heralding the promise of new life every morning. Paris Dawn Burn is an early example of Lucier’s interest in the commingling of life and death in nature, a theme that she continues to explore in her work today.

Mary Lucier’s (b. 1944, Bucyrus, OH) video installations have been shown in major museums and galleries around the world. Many now reside in important collections, among them the Whitney Museum of American Art, NY; the Museum of Modern Art, NY; the Reina Sofia, Madrid; the Stedeljik Museum, Amsterdam; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; ZKM, Karlsruhe, Germany; the Milwaukee Art Museum; the Columbus Museum of Art, OH; and the National Academy of Design, NY, among others. She has also produced a significant body of single channel works which have been screened in museums and festivals world-wide. From the austere black and white experiments of the 1970s to recent studies of Japanese Buddhist ceremonies and Dakota Sioux dances, these works acknowledge the influence of both avant-garde and documentary practices in American art and cinema.

Lucier has been the recipient of many awards and fellowships, including the National Endowment for the Arts, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, Creative Capital, Anonymous Was a Woman, the Nancy Graves Foundation, USA Artists, the American Film Institute, the Jerome Foundation, the New York State council on the Arts, and the Japan-US Friendship Commission. Her teaching appointments have included the Distinguished Visiting Professor in Art and Art History at UC Davis; Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture; adjunct professor in the department of VES at Harvard University; and Visiting Professor in Video Art at University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, among others. Her studios are located in New York City and Cochecton, NY.

Founded in 2010, Cristin Tierney Gallery is a contemporary art gallery located on The Bowery with a deep commitment to the presentation, development, and support of a roster of both established and emerging artists. Its program emphasizes artists engaged with critical theory and art history, with an emphasis on conceptual, video, and performance art. Education and audience engagement is central to our mission.

Cristin Tierney Gallery is a member of the ADAA (Art Dealers Association of America).

Mary Lucier, off-screen image of channel 7 of Paris Dawn Burn, 1977.
Installation view of Mary Lucier, Paris Dawn Burn, 1977 (The Kitchen, New York, 1978).


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