Review: Supersymmetry by Ryoji Ikeda


Ryoji Ikeda’s installation, Supersymmetry. Photo: Jana Chiellino

Ryoji Ikeda’s installation, Supersymmetry. Photo: Jana Chiellino

Ryoji Ikeda’s exhibition ‘Supersymmetry’ is an inspired response to his 2014 residency at Centre For Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, home to the Large Hadron Collider. Japan’s leading electronic composer and visual artist has succeeded in creating a unique, disorientating and immersive installation, which elegantly captures scientists endeavour to understand the complex systems of the quantum world.

Showing until 31 May 2015 in collaboration with The Vinyl Factory, ‘Supersymmetry’ can be found on the top floor of the pitch-black vast space of Brewer Street Car Park in Soho. Utilising forty projectors and computers with continuous mutating sounds of colliding particles, visual data, text, high-speed light displays and kinetic sculpture, the experience is overwhelming for all the right reasons.

The title and installation is based on experiments being carried out at CERN to prove the existence of supersymmetry particles. Their discovery would explain many mysterious features of particle physics and would account for much of the ‘missing’ mass of the universe.

However, if you’re expecting the exhibition to provide an understanding of particle physics you’d be missing the point (Jonathan Jones in the guardian). In this work Ikeda is not trying to communicate or explain supersymmetry, instead he is commenting on the human attempt to reduce and capture meaning from an infinitely changing and staggeringly complex universe, in the most excellent way. It’s definitely a must see.

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