Press Release

Chisenhale Gallery presents Law of Large Numbers: Our Selves, a new commission and first solo exhibition in a UK institution by Berlin-based artist Rindon Johnson. The first iteration of this commission—Law of Large Numbers: Our Bodies—as presented at SculptureCenter, New York, earlier this year. Johnson’ exhibition is commissioned and produced by Chisenhale Gallery and SculptureCenter.



International exhibitions

International Archives 2nd half of 2021

Rindon Johnson, Law of Large Numbers: Our Selves

Chisenhale Gallery, London (United Kingdom)

06.11.2021 - 06.02.2022




Exhibition 06 November 2021 - 06 February 2022. Chisenhale Gallery, 64 Chisenhale Road - London E3 5QZ (United Kingdom). T +44 20 8981 4518. Hours: Wednesday–Sunday 12–6pm.







Moving between physical, object-based works and immersive, virtual space, Johnson’ work cuts through assumed realities and examines how virtual and physical spaces are intimately aligned. His work is couched first in language; in the ways that language fails, contradicts or empowers. Through modes of expression spanning publishing, virtual and augmented reality, to working with materials such as leather, wood and stone to create sculptures and installations, Johnson explores the impact of capitalism, climate and technology on how we see and construct ourselves.

For his commission at Chisenhale Gallery, Johnson works both within the walls of the building, as well as beyond them. The gallery hosts a single-channel video projected onto a vast screen. Coeval Proposition #2: Last Year’ Atlantic, or You look really good, you look like you pretended like nothing ever happened, or a Weakening (2020) comprises a continuous live rendering of ocean weather data meticulously collected by Johnson from March 2020 to January 2021. On any given day over the course of the exhibition, the work generates second-for-second figurative visualisations of weather data gathered on the same day in the previous year. The result creates a yearlong portrait of an area of ocean-surface and surrounding sky, seen from various perspectives. Continuously mapping a recent past through computer generated imagery, Johnson transports visitors to a contained yet constantly moving mass of water to observe its changing climate—rom undulating waves, to falling rain and clearing skies.

This site, known as North Atlantic "cold blob", or the "North Atlantic warming hole", is coincidently located at the approximate geographical midpoint between Chisenhale Gallery in London and SculptureCenter in New York. The mass of water is a stubborn cool patch that, despite the surrounding water’ rising temperature, stays cold. A direct result of Greenland’ ice sheet melting due to climate change, the cooler waters in this area interfere with the Gulf Stream current’ regulation of oceanic and land temperatures from the east coast of North America to the west coast of Europe.

Installed in the Hertford Union Canal, which runs along the back of Chisenhale Gallery is Coeval Proposition #1: Tear down so as to make flat with the Ground or The *Trans America Building DISMANTLE EVERYTHING (2020), a large-scale sculpture referencing the distinctive silhouette of the Transamerica Pyramid in Johnson’ hometown, San Francisco. Floating on a temporary pontoon in the canal, the work is only visible from the towpath of the waterway. The Transamerica Pyramid’ silhouette and name act as starting points to address questions of identity and belonging, such as where one comes from, but also account for an ongoing process of identification and disidentification. Johnson’ sculpture disregards the Transamerica Pyramid’ iconic material construction of concrete, steel, glass and white quartz to produce a work that references the building as a reconstructed outline, remade in reclaimed ebonised redwood and steel. Exposed to the elements and affected by the movement of the canal's waters, the work is both vulnerable and steadfast, simultaneously looking for recognition and obscurity, watched over by a small light embedded in the window of the gallery.

Accompanying the commission is a publication with original writings by Johnson, published by SculptureCenter, Chisenhale Gallery, and Inpatient Press. Connecting Johnson’ rigorous and poetic writing practice with the larger themes of the exhibition, the publication reflects Johnson’ commission and thought processes, as well as being a record of the varied ideas, artistic figures, and approaches that inform his practice. Johnson’ exhibition concludes Chisenhale Gallery’ 2021 Commission Programme, which also included exhibitions by artists Yu Ji and Abbas Akhavan.

Rindon Johnson lives and works in Berlin, Germany. Selected exhibitions include Law of Large Numbers: Our Bodies, SculptureCenter, New York (2021); Away with You, Smithsonian Museum of American Art, Washington DC; This End The Sun, New Museum, New York (both 2020); Circumscribe, Julia Stoschek Collection, Düsseldorf (All 2019); New Black Portraitures, Rhizome, Online; and NGV Triennial, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (both 2017).

Rindon Johnson, Law of Large Numbers: Our Selves (Production image) (2021). Commissioned and produced by Chisenhale Gallery, London and SculptureCenter

Rindon Johnson, Law of Large Numbers: Our Selves, Chisenhale Gallery, London

© ArtCatalyse International / Marika Prévosto 2021. All Rights Reserved