New York

Pipilotti Rist

Luhring Augustine | Chelsea

Pipilotti Rist’s new video installation, Herbstzeitlose, 2004, immersed the viewer in a multimedia bath of transcendent female power under the gaze of the Mother. Part earth goddess, part techno-banshee, Rist’s alter ego or animating idea inhabits a symbolic register in which sight, sound, and touch have never been split apart. Neither ironic nor sanctimonious, this presiding spirit assumes as the baseline of experience an enveloping, polymorphous, often lulling but sometimes scary physicality.

Rist’s vehicle in this case was a multiscreen panorama filmed in the green Swiss hills around St. Gallen, where Rist grew up. Herbstzeitlose means “meadow saffron,” a flower native to those hills. But it also translates as “autumn timeless.” Thus poised between natural detail and disjunctive eternity, the piece engulfed viewers in a paradoxically soothing hyperstimulation, gently appropriating their

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