Jason Rhoades: The Big Picture

Text by Paul McCarthy, Eva Meyer-Hermann, and Ralph Rugoff

The installation “Perfect World,” which Jason Rhoades created for the Deichtorhallen in Hamburg in 1999, is regarded by many as his most important project. This publication is devoted to that huge work, looking at it from a historical distance, and examining the artist’s central modi operandi as prototypes.

In a wide-ranging conversation Paul McCarthy, a former teacher and friend of the artist, together with Ralph Rugoff, looks back at the Hamburg project and discusses its significance in the context of Rhoades’s work overall. In his essay, Rugoff examines the true-to-scale reductions in the installation, which were created in aluminum and sterling silver as reflections of Perfect World, and which can hardly be included in the traditional concept of the “model.” A picture essay by Eva Meyer-Hermann looks at the phenomenon of the recycling of materials in Rhoades’s work, and follows the further development of central themes in the Hamburg installation.

The book includes many drawings from the artist’s “XEROX-book” that can be read as notes on the intellectual zones and material levels of Perfect World while at the same time prefiguring many artistic ideas that occupied Rhoades until his early death in 2006. Lavish illustrations and numerous historical photographs of the versions of Perfect World created in 1999 and 2000, as well as of the complete version of the installation shown in its entirety for the first time in London in 2010 as 1:12 Perfect World provide a detailed insight into Rhoades’s artistic cosmos.


Publisher: JRP|Ringier

Artists: Jason Rhoades

Contributors: Paul McCarthy, Eva Meyer-Hermann, Ralph Rugoff

Publication Date: 2012

Binding: Hardcover

Dimensions: 9 1/2 x 12 in (24.1 x 30.5 cm)

Pages: 158

Reproductions: 82 color, 62 b&w

ISBN: 9783037642269

Retail: $65 | £40

Status: Available

Jason Rhoades

Jason Rhoades was born in Newcastle, California in 1965. He received his MFA from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1993. Later that year, Rhoades joined David Zwirner—becoming part of the gallery’s original roster of artists—and had his first New York solo exhibition. Rhoades’s work has been exhibited internationally since the 1990s. His first solo presentation at a European institution was held at the Kunsthalle Basel in 1996. Other international venues which have organized solo shows include the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands; Kunsthalle Nürnberg, Nuremberg, Germany (both 1998); Deichtorhallen Hamburg, Germany (1999); Museum Haus Esters, Krefeld, Germany (2000); Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien (MUMOK), Vienna (2002); Le Magasin – Centre National d’Art Contemporain de Grenoble, France (2005); and the Centro de Arte Contemporáneo de Málaga, Spain (2006). In 2013, Jason Rhoades, Four Roads marked the first American museum exhibition of the artist’s work, organized by the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia, which travels internationally through 2015 to the Kunsthalle Bremen in Germany and the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead, England. Museum collections which hold works by the artist include the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Tate Gallery, London; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.

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