As part of UBS Openings: Saturday Live, a ground-breaking programme of live performance and film at Tate Modern every two months, American artist Matt Mullican (b 1951) will give a performance while in a state of hypnosis. Matt Mullican has performed under hypnosis for the last thirty years.
The performance will take place under the bridge in Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall. The artist, who often works in black acrylic paint on large sheets of paper, sometimes in a furnished setting, will arrive having already been hypnotised by a professional hypnotist. He will then create an artwork in front of the audience.
Matt Mullican, whose work also includes drawing, sculpture and installation, has long been fascinated by the relationship between information and perception as it is filtered through emotive or unconscious associations. The symbols, shapes and repetitive patterns that he paints during the performances make such concerns visibly manifest. His performances under hypnosis are a crucial aspect of his work and he uses them as a way of developing ideas through the process of taking on the characteristics of other people.