"The Lytic Circus" (2004)

"The Lytic Circus," 2004
Mixed media installation, dimensions vary with installation
Installation view: "São Paolo Biennial XXVI", São Paolo, Brazil
Photo © Matthew Ritchie
Courtesy Andrea Rosen Gallery, New York

"I was thinking about the idea of the cell. In biology, it’s the sacred unit of measurement; the whole body’s built out of the cell. And the thing that ruptures the cell is a virus that escapes. The name of that process is lysis (thus, ‘lytic’ in the work’s title). So when a cell is ruptured by a virus building up inside it’s burst open. And I kept thinking of this as a kind of a prison escape."
- Matthew Ritchie