Roni Horn “The Selected Gifts, (1974-2015)”

Rat Hole Gallery

poster for Roni Horn “The Selected Gifts, (1974-2015)”
[Image: Roni Horn "The Selected Gifts" (1974-2015), 2015-2016 Ink jet prints on Hahnemuehle paper, 67 parts 33 x 33 cm (18 images), 33 x 35.5cm (3 images), 33 x 40.6 cm (31 images), 33 x 45.7cm (9 images), 33 x 48.2 cm (6 images). Courtesy of the artist a

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As the title of the work indicates, The Selected Gifts, (1974 – 2015), features a collection of 67 photographs documenting a history of gifts received by Roni Horn over a period of 41 years. The objects photographed encompass a diverse range of subjects such as letters, books, drawings and photographs by friends, a pair of leather gloves, gold bracelets, the petrified egg of a dinosaur, a stuffed swan, and a fortune cookie fortune. Almost all of the 67 objects are reproduced actual size, floating against a white backdrop and in the artist’s signature serial style. While possessing a documentary function, the photographic work creates what the artist describes as “a vicarious self-portrait.” Collectively, the gifts tell a story, through a language of the self as mediated through both objects and others- “a reflection through the warped optic of others that shows a level of accuracy beyond that of any mirror. A portrait I could not have imagined without the unwitting aid of friends, acquaintances, and knowing strangers,’ explains Horn.
Embedded in ‘The Selected Gifts, (1974 – 2015)’ is not only the passage of time but also the unfolding of an intricate collaboration between the recipient and gift givers- the identities of which remain a mystery. The significance, history, and material value of the objects are also left ambiguous to the viewer. Horn’s process of sorting and selecting from her collection of personal treasures accumulated over four decades, roughly since the beginning of her career, further shapes the artist’s exploration and deep engagement with the mutability and contingent nature of meaning and identity, a recurring theme found throughout the artist’s oeuvre across visually and materially diverse mediums including drawings, photographs, artists’ books, and sculptures.



from December 08, 2017 to March 04, 2018


Roni Horn



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