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The Art Institute of Chicago

Exhibition Detail
Roger Hiorns
111 South Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60603

May 1st, 2010 - September 19th, 2010
© The Art Institute of Chicago. Image used by permission.
Michigan Ave/Downtown
Mon-We, Fri-Sun 10:30-5; Thu 10:30-8;

London-based artist Roger Hiorns’s captivating sculptural objects, installations, and performances exploit unusual materials to disquieting ends. Among the artist’s principal preoccupations is the form of the engine—extracted from both automobiles and airplanes. In the most general terms, the engine is, for Hiorns, a metaphor for networks both inert and, potentially, threateningly alive.


For his commissioned site-specific project on the Bluhm Family Terrace of the Modern Wing, Hiorns presents two Pratt and Whitney TF33 P9 engines, once mounted on Boeing EC135 Looking Glass long-range surveillance planes. For the artist, the project is a representation of a dominant 20th-century object within the context of art and the art museum. The engine apparatus, Hiorns argues, is no less culturally important than the other artworks displayed with it; many works in the Modern Wing were, in fact, created under the shadow of the security the engine assembly once and still provides.


Major funding is generously provided by

The Bluhm Family Endowment Fund supports exhibitions of modern and contemporary sculpture, which may consist of existing works drawn from the Art Institute’s permanent collection or borrowed from other collections private and public, or new works commissioned specifically for this site.

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