James Lee Byars, Perfect Moments. An Exchange of Ideas with Gerhard Johann Lischka, installation view, Secession 2016, Photo: Sophie Thun
James Lee Byars, Perfect Moments. An Exchange of Ideas with Gerhard Johann Lischka, installation view, Secession 2016, Photo: Sophie Thun

James Lee Byars

Perfect Moments. An Exchange of Ideas with Gerhard Johann Lischka

April 22 – June 19, 2016

The exhibition Perfect Moments. An Exchange of Ideas with Gerhard Johann Lischka pays homage to James Lee Byars (Detroit 1932–Cairo 1997), one of the twentieth century’s most unorthodox artists. A performer and visionary, Byars continually probed the bounds of immateriality and delighted friends and acquaintances with letters and other missives.

Byars’s work deftly crosses the boundaries between conceptual, minimal, and performance art. In performances as well as objects, his poetic creativity revolved around his quest for an artistic expression of perfection, which, the artist believed, can be achieved only in encounters between the ephemeral and the eternal that vouchsafe a momentary experience of fulfillment. Byars left a multifaceted oeuvre comprising material works of art in the classic sense as well as hybrid products of an artistic existence that defy unambiguous classification.

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