Julian Opie in VR, Ugo Rondinone in Geneva

Julian Opie’s latest show, at the Lisson Gallery in London, forces viewers to put down their cell phones and look at what’s going on around them. One of the gallery’s rooms is a large space, with white walls, and appears completely empty. But slip on a VR headset and figures begin to dance, birds begin to fly and buildings appear to be floating in space.


Opie says that viewing the works through a headset forces the brain to stop trying to judge and make sense of the exhibit. “It allows me to make an exhibition that physics and practical limitations would not normally allow,” he explained in an interview in Wallpaper, “and literally enter an imagined world.”


Many of Opie’s walking figures can be seen in cities around the world. For this exhibit, Opie was inspired by “shuffle dancing'’ that he saw on line. “With my second daughter, Imogen, an actor and dancer, we isolated five simple but fluid movements from the videos that could be danced and repeated.” he said. “She taught three other dancers the moves and I filmed them at 50 frames per second to 100bpm dance music, then drew them in colours taken from nylon ski wear I photographed on a ski trip with my son, Paul. The project turned into five dances in a series of multiple films and paintings with tracks composed by a young musician, Archie Wingate.” The dance series can be seen as both two-dimensional vinyls and LEDs, with imprints of larger-than-life figures frozen in time on the gallery walls, as well as through four-sided computer animations.



Opie’s style, in paint, sculpture or print is immediately recognizable and globally relatable. Besides the London show Opie has two exhibitions in China, one in South Korea and another coming up in Rome.


Julian Opie: OP.VR@LISSON/London will be on exhibit through April 15, 2023.



Ugo Rondinone was invited to create an exhibit at the Museum of Art and History (MAH) in Geneva. Rondinone used the museum’s collection to juxtapose its historic works with his own contemporary works.


When the sun goes down and the moon comes up features large circular sculptures that act as portals through the dozen or so rooms of the museum. “the sun” is bronze, ‘the moon” is silver.


When the sun goes down and the moon comes up will be on exhibit through June 18, 2023.



Please contact us if you would like more information about the work of Julian Opie and Ugo Rondinone available at VFA.




Charles Moore. Julian Opie: OP.VR@LISSON/London. The Brooklyn Rail. March 2023.

Harriet Lloyd-Smith. Julian Opie on VR, shuffle dancing and obsessive art collecting. Wallpaper. March 24, 2023.

Mark Westall. Julian Opie: OP.VR@LISSON. FAD Magazine. February 27, 2023.

Artnet Gallery Network. Spotlight: Ugo Rondinone’s Witty Takeover of a Swiss Museum Sees Him Curate Himself Into Art History. Artnet News. February 1, 2023.

Gareth Harris. Ugo ROndinone and giants of Swiss art in conversation in Geneva. Financial Times. February 7, 2023.

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