Ryoji Ikeda’s largest European show is coming to 180 Studios, 180 The Strand in 2021

New immersive installations will bring the building’s cavernous spaces to life

Update 2 November 2020: The Vinyl Factory has issued the following statement regarding the Ryoji Ikeda exhibition, which was slated to open this week. 

‘It is with deep regret that, following the Government announcement of tighter Covid restrictions this week, we’re unable to open the Ryoji Ikeda exhibition at this time.

‘At 180, the safety of our visitors comes first and we will be in touch soon with regards to the dates we will open the show, which we plan to do early in the new year.

‘We will be offering all ticket holders the chance to retain their booking or refund their tickets. Please bear with us while we process these requests. We look forward to opening the doors to you in early 2021 to experience this breathtaking exhibition.’

Frieze Week is done, but there is one stellar event still circled on London’s art calendar this year. Ryoji Ikeda is taking over 180 Studios, 180 The Strand from 12 November 2020, with a mammoth solo show that will globally premiere dizzying new works.

Produced by The Vinyl Factory and Fact in collaboration with Audemars Piguet Contemporary, RYOJI IKEDA is the Japanese artist’s largest-ever European exhibition. It will commandeer multiple floors of the cavernous brutalist building. Twelve immersive artworks – five of which have never been seen by the public before – will activate 180 Studios, 180 The Strand’s specially-adapted volumes, turning them into immersive digital worlds.

'a continuum', 2018 (c) Ryoji Ikeda (c) Éditions Xavier Barral, 2018Photography: Patrick Gries
‘a continuum’, 2018 (c) Ryoji Ikeda (c) Éditions Xavier Barral, 2018Photography: Patrick Gries

Ikeda has developed a cult following for his work, which probes the limits of human senses through technology. He combines almost imperceptible frequencies, numeric sequences, digital technologies and scales to create immersive environments that disrupt the experience of space and time.

For the first time, Ikeda’s expansive data-verse trilogy (commissioned by Audemars Piguet Contemporary) will be shown together, making a boon of the building’s vast scale. A new site-specific version of test pattern will also debut along with other UK premiers, including point of no return, which mimics the experience of stepping into a black hole.

It’s been a tough year for the art world due to the pandemic, but RYOJI IKEDA sees 180 Studios, 180 The Strand come out of hibernation. Tickets are available for pre-purchase only, and bookable in 15-minute slots. Guest numbers will also be restricted in line with the latest government guidelines, offering a unique opportunity to see Ikeda’s work up close with no crowds, just small groups, and staged in enormous spaces.

The solo exhibition celebrates five years of collaboration between Ikeda and The Vinyl Factory family and is Fact magazine’s inaugural curatorial adventure, having spent 20 years showcasing the intersection of electronic music and digital art.

Visual render of the new Fact Space. Courtesy of Fact / The Vinyl Factory (c)
Visual render of the new Fact Space. Courtesy of Fact / The Vinyl Factory (c)

After the exhibition wraps on 28 February, Fact will launch an ambitious series of large-scale art shows from its new Fact Space, opening in the basement of 180 The Strand next year. This dynamic hub will provide a platform for a new generation of artists working at the crossroads of art and music giving birth to immersive experiences. Watch this space.

RYOJI IKEDA’ will be a ticketed exhibition. and will be rescheduled for early 2021 at 180 Studios, 180 The Strand, London WC2R 1EA. Entry will be free for NHS staff, key workers, students and under 21s with valid ID.

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