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t est pattern [nº12]site-specific installation, 2017© Ryoji Ikeda. courtesy of The Vinyl Factory
test pattern [nº12]site-specific installation, 2017© Ryoji Ikeda. courtesy of The Vinyl Factory

Get ready to have your eyes melted with Ryoji Ikeda’s new ultra-immersive exhibition

Immersive, like a bath, but for your brain.

Eddy Frankel

In 2014, Ryoji Ikeda sent a beam of light piercing up through the sky. ‘Spectra’ dominated the London skyline with a huge shaft of blinding white. Now, he’s bringing his technological immersive wonders indoors for his biggest ever European exhibition. Ikeda will be taking over the amazing spaces of 180 The Strand, a gorgeous brutalist building that’s perfect for the mind-bending installations he’s known for, from November 12 until February 28 2021. 

It’s not his first visit to 180. Three years ago, he took over one of the main ground-floor rooms with ‘Test Pattern [N° 12]’, a flickering floor installation of endlessly strobing, stuttering lights. It was intense, heady, and one of the best things London saw that autumn. Now, we’re getting a whole exhibition of that kind of thing. 

Among the works on show, visitors will get to experience an installation that’s meant to mimic the feeling of entering a black hole, a tunnel of strobe lighting, giant speaker sculptures and a new version of that amazing ‘Test Pattern’ piece. Sure, it might give you motion sickness or trigger your epilepsy, but that’s a small price to pay for art. 

Ryoji Ikeda (presented by The Vinyl Factory x Fact in collaboration with Audemars Piguet Contemporary) will be at 180 The Strand, Nov 12-Feb 28 2021. Tickets will be available here.

Can’t wait? Here are the best shows you can see in London right now.


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