Cildo Meireles Occasion (2005/2008)

Exhibition Opening

Occasion consists of two separate chambers, separated by mirrored glass. One chamber is empty and the other contains a bowl filled with banknotes. Visitors to this room are presented with the money – but at the same time are aware of three mirrored surfaces surrounding them and possibly concealing viewers. The title of the work comes from the Brazilian expression ‘a ocasião faz o ladrão’ (the occasion makes the thief). The behaviour of visitors to either part of the installation is conditioned by surveillance; this temporary construction will establish a relationship to one of the famous former occupants of its site: Millbank prison – which was itself built according to a panoptical design in order to offer its guards a view of every inmate.

Curated by Michael Asbury, TrAIN, University of the Arts London

In conjunction with the Cildo Meireles retrospective at Tate Modern


Related People

  • Asbury2ln_thumb

    Dr Michael Asbury

    TrAIN Member

    I was born in Teresópolis, in the mountains of Rio de Janeiro, the son of British missionaries. After twenty years in Brazil I came to England to study engineering but fortunately to myself (and others) changed course and went on to complete an MA in The Study of Contemporary Art at Liverpool University and a PhD in the History and Theory of Art at The London Institute (now UAL).
    Find out more about Dr Michael Asbury

  • Cildo Meireles

    Guest Speaker

    Cildo Meireles was born in 1948 in Rio de Janeiro and since the late 1960s has created sculptures, installations and interventions which often involve an element of participation, drawing attention to the body in space and time, whether as a physical, psychological, social or political being, and most frequently as a combination of all of the above.
    In his work Meireles addresses political, social and environmental issues, which in the 1960s and 70s created tension with the Brazilian government’s strict state censorship.
    Find out more about Cildo Meireles