06.09. – 25.10.2003
Keith Tyson (GB)
“Works from a Teleological Accelerator”
Solo exhibition at Arndt & Partner, Berlin

Keith Tyson “Works from a Teleological Accelerator”, 2003 Keith Tyson “Works from a Teleological Accelerator”, 2003


“The Hypothesis:
The future, acting as it does, as a teleological draw on the endeavours of mankind, is already present and encoded in the emerging frontiers of our collective input. Yet, paradoxically, in each decision or mark we have free will. By taking a holistic view of these frontiers and breeding them I intend to build a teleological accelerator that can freely evolve without the hinderence of … and through this experiment I hope to see (and construct the future) I expect to learn something.
Cold and mechanical? – Anything but! I expect to see the beauty of the world and by riding this glorious dynamic….?” Keith Tyson
Keith Tyson’s work is difficult to categorise. The diversity of his style is reflected in the extensive creation of objects, paintings, drawings, photographic work and installations. Underlying this sheer variety of media is an obsession with questioning conventional methodologies of constructing reality through artistic production. Conceiving art as a form of experimentation, or ongoing „research project“, Tyson provokes new ways of visual and intellectual perception. He investigates with ease the models and order systems we have created, ranging from literature, science, philosophy, mathematics to science fiction and fantasy.
Probably his most notorious device is his creation of an „art machine“: a computer, which is connected to the internet and thus able to access an infinite network of information, generates linguistic proposals for the creation of art works. Language and chance allow for a random embrace of incompatible realities, and moreover free the artist from his need to generate and realise ideas.
His latest work, a „Teleological Accelerator“, which Tyson conceived for his exhibition at Arndt & Partner, is rooted in a similar obsession. In this case, teleology acts as starting point: the belief that the entire history of mankind and human endeavour are predetermined by and unfold according to interacting physical, emotional, intellectual and scientific forces.
Upon entering the exhibition room at the back, the visitor is confronted with a massive wall installation of five meters width, constructed of two interlocking discs that comprise a diagram of words and concepts ranging from all sorts of endeavours of human mankind to a random accumulation of scientific definitions. By means of flexible indicators attached to the disks, the teleological accelerator can generate combinations of ideas and linguistic proposals. Merging the theory of teleology with the notion of chance, Tyson playfully not only provokes new ways of perception; by using the machine, a device which consciously interacts with the notion of a determined development though time, the potential materialisation of random ideas is activated and can above all be accelerated. Tyson even goes as far as presenting first results of the machine’s proposals in the gallery space, once more confirming the imaginative scope and humour of his work.
Despite Tyson‘s obsessive engagement with science and technology, his works are far from being cold and mechanical. His „Studio Wall Drawings“, for example, offer a complex insight into encountered problems and reflections on the artist’s projects. In the manner of a diary or daily journal, Tyson not only documents the genesis and development of ideas, such as that of the „Teleological Accelerator“. His works also state fragments of conversations, opinions, perceptions or states of emotions by means of preparatory sketches, drawings and writings - and thus form a fundamental component of his oeuvre.
It is Tyson’s sheer endless imagination, his playful, yet scientific approach towards the world in which we live, combined with an awareness of the impossibility of assimilating the sheer density of information acting upon us at every moment, that makes his work entirely original, stimulating and energetic, visually as well as intellectually.
Keith Tyson, who lives in Brighton and works in London, was born in Cumbria, UK, in 1969. After having completed a course in mechanical engineering, he studied fine art and finished his studies with an MA in Alternative Practices at the University of Brighton in 1993. Since then his work has been exhibited considerably across Europe and the US, including exhibitions in London, New York, San Francisco, Paris, Zurich, Vienna and Prague. He also participated at the 49th Venice Biennial (2001) and the XXV São Paolo Biennial (2002). In 2002 Keith Tyson was selected as the winner of the annual Turner Prize of 2002 at Tate Britain, London, UK. We are delighted to present Keith Tyson’s work at Arndt & Partner, which is also his first solo show in Germany.