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Patricia L. Boyd
Ceiling Analysis
18.11.2022 – 5.2.2023
Patricia L. Boyd, Ceiling Analysis, Ausstellungsansicht, Secession 2022, Foto: Iris Ranzinger

Ceiling Analysis is Patricia L. Boyd’s first institutional solo exhibition in Austria, consisting of newly commissioned work. The central piece is a large sculpture suspended from the ceiling of the Grafisches Kabinett, further lowering the already low ceiling of the gallery. The sculpture is the same length and width as the ceiling in Boyd’s psychoanalyst’s office in New York.


“A ceiling is part of a room, but it is also a limit. Does nearing an endpoint require a cataloguing of loss incurred along the way? There is only so much I can do to change the behaviour I repeat. I keep speaking and reworking. She is behind me.”
(PLB, 2022)


Ceiling Analysis II is borne of an inquiry into the interdependency between what we refer to as “external”
and “internal” (including all the various permutations of what those words can mean). It addresses the
architecture of the gallery it hangs in, while also operating as a metaphor for the constitution of an interior
mental space. Boyd’s exhibition is grounded in her experiences of the inclined, horizontal posture she
assumes as an analysand hour upon hour, week upon week. What happens when we give up our upright,
standing position, tied to a hierarchical thinking structure?


The materials in the sculpture include hand-pressed, hand-etched aluminium sheets; filler; metal braces; steel; ropes; dark brown paint; fabric. Layer by layer, Boyd excavates the original ceiling, reproducing its concrete details and bringing its different elements together into a constellation that has no integral cohesive surface. The predominant feature of the original is a repeating pattern across adjoining 61-by- 61-centimeter mechanically pressed tinplate tiles—a mass-produced, popular ceiling material in the U.S. since the late nineteenth century. If the structuring element of Boyd’s work is a solid grid, the lower layer is fragile, and seems lacerated, ravaged. The weight is held up by ropes, suggesting a temporary stability while making the moment of its slippage or even complete collapse imaginable.


Boyd’s practice encompasses sculpture, photography, writing, and video. It is often characterized by a display of the negative by way of inversions, elisions, and removals.

18.11.2022 | 19:00
Jean-Frédéric Schnyder | The Otolith Group | Patricia L. Boyd
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13.01.2023 | 16:30
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Patricia L. Boyd

lebt und arbeitet in London.

Programmiert vom Vorstand der Secession

Kuratiert von
Annette Südbeck

Vereinigung bildender Künstler*innen Wiener Secession
Friedrichstraße 12
1010 Vienna
Tel. +43-1-587 53 07