The work of Richard Wilson (b.1953) often comes closer to engineering or even architecture than it does to traditional sculpture. Typically he transforms the viewer's environment into something unsettling and strange by the interventions he makes, whether in the internal space of a gallery, the structure of a building or in one of the ships with which he has a particular affinity. Perhaps Wilson's best-known work is 20:50, for which he flooded a gallery space with oil, which has a highly reflective surface. Into the oil is built a kind of narrow pier or promenade down which one person at a time can walk, the oil perilously close to their body. So reflective is the oil that the room induces a strong sense of disorientation. In addition to and often in conjunction with such large-scale projects, Wilson makes films and sculpture, takes photographs and stages performance events and has been a formative influence on a generation of British artists. This lavishly illustrated career survey includes a new interview with Wilson and examines six key works in depth.
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