Francis Alÿs: A Story of Deception

Texts by Eduardo Abaroa, Francesco Careri, T.J. Demos, Carla Faesler, Boris Groys, Miwon Kwon, Tom McDonough, Cuauhtémoc Medina, Laymert Garcia dos Santos, Lorna Scott Fox, and Eyal Weizman

Francis Alÿs: A Story of Deception was published to accompany the artist’s largest retrospective organized by the Tate Modern, London, in 2010. The exhibition traveled to the Wiels Centre d’Art Contemporain, Brussels, and was presented as a multi-venue show at The Museum of Modern Art, New York, and MoMA PS1, Long Island City. Alÿs, who works in a variety of media and a range of scales, fashions much of his work from the street life he observes during long walks throughout the city. This publication reads more like a guidebook than a conventional exhibition catalogue, reflecting the spirit of his wandering practice. With an introductory essay by Tate Modern curator Mark Godfrey and comments on over sixty key works by Alÿs and long-time collaborator Cuauhtémoc Medina, it features a dictionary of quotes from the artist compiled by MoMA PS1 director Klaus Biesenbach as well as responses to his work from a range of international contributors, including artists, critics, poets, and urban theorists.


Publisher: The Museum of Modern Art, New York / Tate

Artists: Francis Alÿs

Contributors: Eduardo Abaroa, Francesco Careri, T.J. Demos, Carla Faesler, Laymert Garcia dos Santos, Boris Groys, Miwon Kwon, Tom McDonough, Cuauhtémoc Medina, Lorna Scott Fox, Eyal Weizman

Publication Date: 2010

Binding: Softcover

Dimensions: 7 1/2 x 9 1/2 in (19.1 x 24.1 cm)

Pages: 192

Reproductions: 132 color

ISBN: 9780870707902

Retail: $35 US & Canada | £20 | €24

Status: Out Of Print

Francis Alÿs

Francis Alÿs’s art is centered around observations of, and engagements with, everyday life. His multifaceted projects include public actions, installations, videos, paintings, and drawings; the artist himself has described his work as “a sort of discursive argument composed of episodes, metaphors, or parables.” Across these different media, Alÿs presents his distinct poetic and imaginative sensibility towards anthropological and political concerns. His actions have involved traveling the longest possible route between locations in Mexico and the United States to highlight the increasing obstacles imposed along the border; pushing a melting block of ice through city streets; commissioning sign painters to copy his paintings; filming his efforts to enter the center of a tornado; carrying a leaking can of paint along the contested Israel/Palestine border; and equipping hundreds of volunteers to move a colossal sand dune ten centimeters.

All Francis Alÿs books