Lisson Gallery

Tony Oursler

Always rooted in the medium of film, Tony Oursler conjures sculptural and immersive experiences using technologies that hark back to magic lanterns, Victorian light shows, camera obscura and auratic parlour tricks, but that also look forward to the fully networked, digitally assisted future of image and identity production. As a pioneer of video art in early 1980s New York, Oursler specialized in hallucinogenic dramaturgy and radical formal experimentation, employing animation, montage and live action: “My early idea of what could be art for my generation was an exploded TV”. From performative and low-fi beginnings, Oursler has developed an ever-evolving multimedia and audio-visual practice utilising projections, video screens, sculptures and optical devices, which might take form as figurative puppets, ethereal talking automatons or immersive, cacophonous environments. His enduring fascination for the conjunctions between the diametrically opposed worlds of science and spiritualism have allowed him to explore all kinds of occult and mystical phenomena.

Tony Oursler lives and works in New York, NY, USA. Born in 1957, he graduated from the California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, CA, USA and collaborated on early works with artists such as Mike Kelley. His museum exhibitions include Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, USA (2017); Magasin III Museum & Foundation for Contemporary Art, Stockholm, Sweden (2016); Hessel Museum of Art, Bard College, Annandale-On-Hudson, NY, USA (2016); Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, USA (2016); LUMA Westbau, Zurich, Switzerland (2015); Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2014); Oude Kerk, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2014); Pinchuk Art Centre, Kiev, Ukraine (2013); ARoS Aarhus Kunstmuseum, Denmark (2012); Helsinki City Art Museum, Finland (2005); Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY, USA (2005); Kunsthaus Bregenz, Austria (2001); Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY, USA (2000) and Kunstverein Hannover, Germany (1998). In addition to participating in prestigious group exhibitions such as documenta VIII and IX, Kassel, Germany (1987 and 1992), Oursler’s work is included in many public collections worldwide, including the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC, USA; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France; Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, USA; National Museum of Osaka, Japan; Tate Collection, London, UK; Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands and ZMK/Center for Art & Media, Karlsruhe, Germany. The Public Art Fund will debut a new, site-specific project by Oursler on the Hudson River in October 2018.

Current & Recent Projects:

'Tear of the Cloud', Public Art Fund, New York, NY, 10 - 31 October 2018 

Tony Oursler
Imponderable (Film still), 2015
5D Feature Length Film 90 minutes

Tony Oursler
Imponderable (Film still), 2015
5D Feature Length Film 90 minutes

Tony Oursler
Yet to be titled, 2015
Aluminium with iPads and sound 124.5 x 86.4 cm 49 x 34 in

Tony Oursler
template/variant/friend/stranger , 2015
Installation view, Lisson Gallery, London

Tony Oursler
VIE, 2014
Wood, mounted photo print, monitors and media player 262 x 192 x 58 cm 103 1/8 x 75 5/8 x 22 3/4 in

Tony Oursler
Elastic brunch, 2014
Mixed media on paper 101.6 x 76.2 cm unframed, 115.5 x 90 cm framed 40 x 30 in unframed, 45 1/2 x 35 3/8 in framed

Tony Oursler
The Influence Machine, 2011
Installation view, Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester, UK

Tony Oursler
Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two, 2010
Installation view, Gallery Faurschou, Beijing, China

Tony Oursler
121, 2008
Video projection, sound, wood, and resin Resin form: 61 x 58.4 x 183 cm Resin form: 24 x 23 x 72 in Installation dimensions variable

Tony Oursler
Winston, Camel, Salem, Marlboro, 2008
video projection, sound, resin, mirror, wallpaper installation dimensions variable

Tony Oursler
Ello, 2003

Fibreglass, dvd, dvd player and projector 125 x 125 x 42 cm 49 1/4 x 49 1/4 x 17 3/4 in

Tony Oursler
Installation view,
Lisson Gallery, London
17th September - 1st November 2003

Tony Oursler
Drift, 2001

Glass, resin, metal video projection
76.2 x 40.64 x 25.4 cm 30 x 16 x 10 in

Tony Oursler
You/Me/Them, 1996

Two dolls, wooden shelf, steel rods, video projection
186.5 x 33.5 x 48.5 cm 73 3/8 x 13 1/4 x 19 in

Tony Oursler
Plaid Doll, 1992

Cloth, metal, video projection
Doll: 101.6 x 25.4 x 5.1cm Doll: 40 x 10 x 2 in


  1. Tony Oursler: TC: the most interesting man...

    29 June – 10 August 2018

  2. Tony Oursler – template/variant/friend/str...

    30 January – 7 March 2015

  3. Tony Oursler: High

    2 September – 3 October 2008

  4. Tony Oursler

    17 September – 1 November 2003

  5. Tony Oursler: Blue Transmission

    11 March – 20 April 2000

  6. Tony Oursler: Talking Light

    19 January – 24 February 1996

  7. Tony Oursler

    4 February – 26 March 1994

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