END OF ENGINES: Robbie Thomson
4 Dec – 22 Jan 2022 / Main Gallery

The alchemical properties of oil and the gloaming of the combustion engine are symbols for our age of consumption in Robbie Thomson’s multimedia installation, End of Engines.

Thomson’s exhibition links the deep history of the planet to our contemporary environmental condition and draws on cosmological themes to illustrate the ability of oil to transcend and entangle time. The work meditates on the creative and destructive forces of technology, the allure of the synthetic and the nihilism of industrial exploitation. Although sometimes ominous in tone, the void-like quality of the installation suggests radical re-imaginings of alternative futures and relationships between humans and the earth.

Inspired by the aesthetics of petroleum architecture, mythology, astronomy and car customisation, this installation features a collection of robotic sound and light sculptures. Using liquids, reflection and rotation, the sculptures create intricate interplays of light and motion that animate the walls of the space.

An Lanntair is delighted to host the End of Engines exhibition as part of Làn Thìde, the newly established Outer Hebrides Climate Beacon; a collective and network of arts, heritage, community, environmental and third sector organisations, located in the Outer Hebrides and established to create a programme of public engagement focused on climate change and developed with community collaboration at its core.
This programme aims to engage and inspire a diverse range of inhabitants in the Outer Hebrides, including its most remote communities. This engagement seeks to learn about the climate change impacts as expressed by rural and island voices in the Outer Hebrides, to collectively begin planning for a region wide process of adapting to the effects of climate change.