And Goes


Neon on 4 second timer

Length: 1.76 meters

Letter Height: 16cm

Etchells’ work playfully enacts the meaning of the phrase that it conjures, the neon light of the work coming and going at 4 second intervals with the aid of an electronic timer. Here, as is often the case with Etchells’ work, missing information plays an important part – And Goes does not specify what exactly ‘it’ is that is coming and going, leaving the viewer to speculate. What comes and goes could be an unidentified feeling, pain or memory, or simply the electrical power supply that is needed to illuminate the work.

About Tim Etchells’ neon and LED works
Etchells’ neon and LED pieces often draw on his broader fascinations as an artist, writer and performance maker, exploring contradictory aspects of language – the speed, clarity and vividness with which it communicates narrative, image and ideas, and at the same time its amazing propensity to create a rich field of uncertainty and ambiguity.

Through simple phrases spelt out in neon, LED and other media, Etchells strives to create miniature narratives, moments of confusion, awkwardness, reflection and intimacy in public and gallery settings. Encountering the neon sign works, in the streets of a city or in the space of a white cube gallery, the viewer becomes implicated in a situation that’s not fully revealed, or a linguistic formulation that generates confusion or ambiguity. As often in Etchells’ work, in the neons the missing parts of the picture are as important as the elements that are present. Invoking a story, or projecting an idea out-of-context, the work invites us in, but into what exactly we can’t be sure.