Stephen Willats | i |
last name: Willats
first name: Stephen
birthday: 1943

From the 1960’s until today, Stephen Willats has situated his pioneering practice at the intersection between art and other disciplines such as cybernetics, systems research, learning theory, communications theory and computer technology. In so doing, he has constructed and developed a collaborative, interactive and participatory practice grounded in the variables of social relationships and settings. Willats’ creates multi-sensory, multi-dimensional environments to encourage viewers to engage with their own creative and cognitive processes. Using the everyday as a site of investigation, his work presents a vehicle of exchange through which viewers can re-examine and transform the way they perceive the fabric of existing reality.



1962 – 63 ‘The Ground Course’, Ealing School of Art.
1965 To date Editor and publisher of Control Magazine.
1972 – 73 Director of ‘The Centre for Behavioural Art’, London.
1979 – 80 D.A.A.D. Fellowship, West Berlin.
1990 Convener of the Symposium, ‘Art Creating Society’, Museum of Modern Art, Oxford.
1991 ‘Stephen Willats – Printed Archive’ established at the Victoria and Albert Museum.
2003 Convener of the Seminars ‘Art Intervention’ – Control Magazine at Vilma Gold, London.
1964 Chester Beatty Research Centre, London.
1968 Visual Automatics & Visual Transmitters, Museum of Modern Art, Oxford.
1973 The Artist As An Instigator Of Changes in Social Cognition and Behaviour, Gallery House, London.
1974 Life Codes And Behaviour Parameters, Gallery December, Munster, West Germany.
1975 Coding Structures And Behaviour Parameters, Massimo Minini, Gallery Banco, Brescia, Italy.
Meta Filter, A State Of Agreement, The Gallery, London.
1976 Life Codes And Behaviour Parameters, The Midland Group Gallery, Nottingham.
Social Structures: The Perception of Context, Stampa Gallery, Basel, Switzerland.
Attitudes Within Four Relationships, Lisson Gallery, London.
1977 Attitudes Within Four Relationships, Southampton City Art Gallery.
1978 Questions About Ourselves, Lisson Gallery, London.
Living Within Contained Conditions, Museum of Modern Art, Oxford.
1979 Concerning Our Present Way of Living, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London.
1980 The Lurky Place, Galerie Jurgen Schweinebraden, East Berlin.
Four Professionals, Lisson Gallery, London.
Berlin Wall Drawings, Galerie Rudiger Schottle, Munich.
Concerning Our Present Way of Living, Stedelijk van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven.
4 Inseln in Berlin, National Galerie, West Berlin.
1981 4 Inseln in Berlin, Goethe Institute, London.
Mens en Omgeving, De Beyerd Centrum voor beeldende Kunst, Breda, Holland.
1982 Meta Filter and Related Works, Tate Gallery, London.
The New Reality, Orchard Gallery, Londonderry, Northern Ireland.
1983 Angst in den Strasse, Rudiger Schottle Galerie, Munich.
Inside The Night, Lisson Gallery, London.
Under Cover, Arnolfini Gallery, Bristol.
1984 Means of Escape, Rochdale Art Gallery, Greater Manchester.
Another City, Riverside Studios, London.
1985 Doppelganger, Lisson Gallery, London.
Double Crossing, Ralph Wernicke Galerie, Stuttgart.
1986 City of Concrete, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham.
Grusse vom Medernen Lebe, Stadtische Galerie, Regensburg, West Germany.
Groeten uit het moderne leven, Museum van Hedenaagse Kunst, Utrecht, Holland.
Concepts and Models, ICA, London.
Vier Hiizen in Den Haag, Haags Gemeentemuseum, Den Haag, Holland.
Striking Back, Mappin Art Gallery, Sheffield.
Fragments of Modern Living, Galerie Tanja Grunert, Cologne.
1987 Contemporary Living, Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst, Gent.
Between Objects And People, Leeds City Art Gallery.
1988 Transformers, Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle.
Code Breakers, Torch Gallery, Amsterdam.
Stephen Willats, Galerie Ralph Wernicke, Stuttgart.
1989 Secret Language, Cornerhouse Gallery, Manchester.
1990 Mosaics, Galerie Kaj Forsblom, Helsinki, Finland.
Stephen Willats, Galerie Barbara Farber, Amsterdam.
1991 Publishing Interventions, 1963 – 1991, National Art Library, Victoria & Albert Museum, London.
1992 Signs of Living, Galerie Gabrielle Maubrie, Paris.
1993 Buildings & People, Berlinische Galerie, Berlin.
Multiple Clothing, Institute of Contemporary Art, London.
Walking Between Objects, Galerie Franck & Schulte, Berlin.
Buildings & People, Goethe Institute, London.
1994 Multiple Clothing, Daniel Buchholz, Cologne.
Random Life, Victoria Miro Gallery, London.
Museum Mosaic, Tate Gallery, Liverpool.
Fateful Combinations, The British School at Rome.
Into the Infra-Structure, Galerie Lumen Travo, Amsterdam.
Urban Nomads, Galerie Gabrielle Maubrie, Paris.
1995 Living Together, Tramway, Glasgow.
A State Of Agreement, Galerie Franck & Schulte, Berlin.
Writing on the Wall, Galerie Kaj Forsblom, Helsinki.
Writing on the Wall, Reinhard Hauff at Galerie Archim Kubinski, Stuttgart.
1996 In Response To Each Other, Galerie Brandstetter & Wyss, Zurich.
Du Hasard a l’Accord, Galerie Gabrielle Maubrie, Paris.
1997 Street Talk, Gallery Victoria Miro, London.
Between Me And You, Middlesbrough Art Gallery.
MULTICULT, Galerie Lumen Travo, Amsterdam.
1998 Random Encounter, Southampton City Art Gallery.
Changing Everything, South London Art Gallery.
Creative Force, Mappin Art Gallery, Sheffield.
Multicult Berlin, Galerie Franck & Schulte, Berlin.
Concepts, Strategies & Models 1962 – 65, Gimpel Fils, London.
Blind Date With Reality, Galerie Brandstetter & Wyss, Zurich.
1999 Multichannel Vision, Galerie Reinhard Hauff, Stuttgart.
2000 Macro To Micro. Gallery Laure Genillard.London.
2001 Traces And Signs Galerie Lumen Travo. Amsterdam.
Rencontres et Cooperations 1970-2000. Galerie Gabrielle Maubrie. Paris.
2002 Through Your Symbolic World. Victoria Miro Gallery, London.
Cognition Control. From The Archives of Stephen Willats. Institute of Visual Culture. Fitzwilliam Museum. Cambridge.
2003 Personal Encounters In Your Imagination, Galerie Reinhard Hauff, Stuttgart.
2004 Messages From The Polemical City. Galerie Thomas Schulte, Berlin.
2005 Street Talk Amsterdam. Galerie Lumen Travo, Amsterdam.
Multichannel Life, Galerie Christian Nagel, Köln, Germany.
Going Home. MOT Gallery, London.
2006 Publishing Interventions, Connor Donlon Books, Herald Street Gallery, London.
From My Mind To your Mind, Victoria Miro Gallery, London.
Wie die Welt ist und wie sie sein könnte, Stephen Willats, Museum für Gegenwartskunst Siegen, Germany.
2007 Person To Person People To People, Milton Keynes Gallery, Milton Keynes.
Assumptions And Presumptions, film commission by Transport for London, for Rayners Lane and Sudbury Town Underground Stations.
Just Between People, Galerie Reinhard Hauff, Stuttgart.
2008 Democratic Mosaics And Conceptual Towers, Galerie Thomas Schulte, Berlin.
The Architecture of Stephen Willats, LWL, Westfälisches Landesmuseum, Munster, Germany.
The Speculative Diagram, CASCO, Utrecht, Holland.
2009 Cybernetic Still Life, BaliceHertling Gallerie, Paris.
In And Out The Underworld European Kunsthalle, Köln.
The Ideological Diagram Galerie Christian Nagel, Köln.
Assumptions And Identity Identity And Assumptions, Galerie Lumen Travo, Amsterdam.
2010 The World As It Is and the World As It Could Be, Victoria Miro, London.
In Two Minds, Erna Hecey Gallery, Brussels.
1966 Kunst Licht Kunst, Stedelijk van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, Holland.
1967 K 4, Brighton Festival.
Light and Movement, Herbert Art Gallery, Coventry.
1968 Public Eye, Kunsthaus Hamburg, Germany.
Preview London, Camden Arts Centre, London.
1969 Five Light Artists, Greenwich Theatre Art Gallery, London.
British Movements, Onnasch Galerie, Berlin, Germany.
1970 Kinetic Art, Hayward Gallery, London.
1971 Electric Theatre, ICA Gallery, London.
Invention of Problems, Leicester Polytechnic, Leicester.
Cognition Control, Museum of Modern Art, Oxford.
1972 Survey of the Avant-Garde, Gallery House, London.
Cognition Control, Midland Group Gallery, Nottingham.
1973 Interact, Edinburgh Festival, Scotland.
1974 Art as Thought Process, Serpentine Gallery, London.
1975 Structures and Codes, Royal College of Art Gallery, London.
Artists’ Bookworks, British Council Touring Exhibition for Germany.
Body and Soul, Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool.
1976 Artist’s Bookworks, Arts Council of Great Britain Touring Exhibition.
Art as Thought Process, British Council Touring Exhibition for France.
Twentieth Century Artist’s Photographs, Israel Museum, Israel.
1977 Gallery Artists, Lisson Gallery, London and then Fine Arts Building, New York.
Social Criticism and Art Practice, San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, USA.
10th Biennale of Paris, France.
1979 Un Certain Art Anglais, ARC 2, Museum of Modern Art, Paris.
Anglo-Belgium Exhibition, JP2 Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels.
Languages, Third Eye Centre, Glasgow, Arts Council of Great Britain Touring Exhibition.
La Parola e le Imagine, Commune di Milano, Italy.
1980 Artist and Camera, Mappin Art Gallery, Sheffield.
1981 Kunst und Politik, Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe, Germany.
Die Kehrseite der Wunschbilder, Bonner Kunstverein, Bonn, Germany.
Sculpture in the Twentieth Century, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London.
1982 Contemporary Choice, Contemporary Art Society Exhibition, Serpentine Gallery, London.
Noi altri wir anderen. Regensberg Stadt Museum, Germany.
Past – Present – Future, Wuttembergischer Kunstverein, Stuttgart, Germany.
Enweiterte Fotografie, Wiener Secession, Wiener, Austria.
London – New York, Lisson Gallery, London.
Aperto 82, Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy.
1983 Place, Gimpel Fils Gallery, London.
New Art and the Tate Gallery, Tate Gallery, London.
The Sculpture Show, Hayward Gallery, London.
1984 Strip Language, Gimpel Fils Gallery, London.
1985 Watch Your Step, Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester.
Sculpture Alternatives – Aspects of Photography and Sculpture in Britain 1965 – 82, Tate Gallery, London.
The British Art Show, National Art Gallery, Wellington, New Zealand.
Summer in the City, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham.
Human Interest, Cornerhouse Gallery, Manchester.
The British Show, Art Gallery of New South Wales (travelling exhibition throughout Australia).
1986 The Art of Peace Biennale, Kunstverein, Hamburg, Germany.
Androgyn, Academie der Kunst, Berlin, Germany.
Eye Level, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, Holland.
1987 Art and Craft made and designed in the Twentieth Century, Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle upon Tyne.
1988 British Modernist Painting, Birch & Conran Fine Art, London.
Beyond the City, The Metropolis, Triennale di Milano, Italy.
What is good appears, and what appears is good, Galerie Tanja Grunert, Cologne, Germany.
New Urban Landscape, World Financial Centre, Battery Park, New York, USA.
100 Years of British Art, Leeds City Art Gallery, Leeds.
New Reform Retrospective 1970 – 79, Cultural Centre, Alst, Belgium.
1989 Invisible City, Leeds City Art Gallery, Leeds.
Tekens Van Verzet, Beeld Museum Fodor, Amsterdam, Holland.
1990 Art Creating Society, Exhibition to accompany Symposium at the MOMA, Oxford.
1991 Oikos, Galerie Gabrielle Maubrie, Paris.
Excavating the Present, Kettles Yard Gallery, Cambridge.
Past Continuous, Artsite Trust, Bath Festival.
Shocks to the System, ACGB Touring Exhibition, South Bank Centre, London.
1992 Wasteland, Photographic Biennale, Rotterdam, Holland.
Real Stories, Museet fur Photokunst, Odense, Denmark.
Instructions and Diagrams, Victoria Miro Gallery, London.
1993 Sixties Art Scene in London, Barbican Art Gallery, London.
Out of Sight, Out of Mind, Lisson Gallery, London.
Public and Private, Stills Gallery, Edinburgh, Scotland.
The Ideal Place, HCAK, Den Haag, Holland.
1994 Outsiders, Camerawork, London.
Visione Britannica, Valentina Moncada, Rome, Italy.
Sarah Staton Super Store Boutique, Laure Genillard Gallery, London.
Conceptual Living, Rhizome, Amsterdam, Holland.
Looking at Words: Reading Pictures, Elms Lester Painting Rooms, London.
Lesezimmer II, Kunstlerhaus, Stuttgart, Germany.
1995 Mapping Knowledge, The Minories Gallery, Colchester.
Ars 95 Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
I don’t actually have to go, Galerie Lumen Travo, Amsterdam, Holland.
Imprint 93, City Racing, London.
Temples, Victoria Miro Gallery, London.
Ideal Standard Summertime, Lisson Gallery, London.
La Transparence Dans L’Art Du XXe Siecle, Museum des Beaux-Arts Malraux, Le Havre, France.
The Edge of Town, Joseloff Gallery, University of Hartford, Conn., USA.
Paste-Up, Past & Present, Kent Gallery, New York.
1996 Les Contes de Fees se terminent bien, Frac Haute-Normandie, Chateau du Val Freneuse, Sotteville-sous-le-Val.
Radikale Images, 2nd Austrian Triennale for Photograph, Neue Galerie, Graz.
Everybody’s Talking, Gemeentemuseum Helmond, Holland.
1997 Sous le manteau, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropec, Paris.
The Grand Design, The Art of the Victoria and Albert Museum, Baltimore Museum of Art, USA.
In Every Moment Everywhere, Porin Taidemuseo, Finland.
C’est ici que nous vivons (2), FRAC Rhones-Alpes, France.
Photographie d’une Collection 3/97, de la Caise des Depots et Consignations, Paris.
Wilson to Callaghan, Poster Studio, London.
1998 Addressing the Century, 100 Years of Art & Fashion, Hayward Gallery, London.
1999 Nur Wasser Lasst Sich Leichter Schneiden, Hamburg.
Bildung. Grazer Kunstverien. Graz. Austria.
Borderline PILOT. Museum van Bommel van Dam, Venlo.Holland.
2000 Democracy. Royal College of Art. London.
Live In Your Head. Whitechapel Art Gallery. London.
Protest And Survive.Whitechapel Art Gallery.London.
Raw.Victoria Miro Gallery.London.
ein/raumen. Hamburger Kunsthalle. Hamburg.
Protest And Survive. Whitechapel Art Gallery.London.
2001 City Racing. A Partial Account Institute of Contemporary Art, London.
Conception. Conceptual Documents 1968-72 Norwich Gallery.Norwich.
Double Vision.Galerie fur Zeitgenossische Kunst. Leipzig.Germany.
Antagonisms. Musee d’Art Contemperani, de Barcelona. Spain.
Arbeit Essen Angst, Kokerei Zollverein, Essen. Germany.
The Map Is Not The Territory. England & Co. London.
Video Evidence. Southampton City Art Gallery. Southampton.
Video Project Space. Anthony Wilkinson Gallery. London.
Works on Paper, Acconci To Zittel. Victoria Miro Gallery.London.
Selbst Portrat. Schloss Agathenburg. Agathenburg. Germany.
Stadsgezichten. Amsterdam vereeuwigd 1901-2001 Amsterdam Historisch Museum. Holland.
2002 Private Views.London Print Studio.
The Gap Show. Museum am Ostwald. Dortmund.
Air Guitar Milton Keynes Gallery and then touring.
Art For Networks. Chapter Art Centre, Cardiff and then touring.
Blast To Freeze. British Art In The Twentieth Century. Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg. Germany.
2003 Collection 001. Frac Rhone-Alpes. Institut d’art Contemporain.Villeurbanne. France.
In Portraiture Irrelevance Is Ugliness. Curated by Claudia Seidel.Galerie Reinhard Hauff. Stuttgart.
Bewitched Bothered and Bewildered. Migros Museum. Zurich.
In Portraiture Irrelevance Is Ugliness. Museum Schloss Hardenberg. Velbert-Neviges. Germany.
Art For Networks. Turnpike Gallery. Leith, Nr Manchester.
Air Guitar. Reconsidering Rock Music. Tulie House Museum & Art Gallery. Carlise.
Urban Codes, coder/decoder, Espace de l’Art Concret, Chateau de Mouans, Mouans-Sartoux. France.
Independence. South London Gallery.
2004 3rd Berlin Biennial. Martin Gropius Bau. Berlin.
L’Air du Temps, Migros Museum, Zurich.
Streets, Galerie Lumen Travo, Amsterdam.
Engagierte Kunst 70/90 Neus Museum, Nürnberg, Germany.
Re:Location. 1-7 Shake, Halle für Kunst Lüneburg, Germany.
Art & The 60’s. This Was Tomorrow. Tate Gallery, London.
Art & The 60’s. This Was Tomorrow. Birmingham City Art Museum.
La Collection Continue FRAC Corse, Centre Culturel Una Volta, Bastia. France.
Vanishing Points:Landscape Art Beyond The Horizon. Southampton City Art Gallery.
70/90. Engagierte Kunst. Neuesmuseum, Nürnberg, Germany.
2005 Faltering Flame. Graves Art Gallery, Sheffield.
Kritische Gesellschaften. Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe, Germany.
Borders Dialogues, Barents Art Triennial, Kirkenes, Norway.
Wie Gesellschaft und Politik Ins Bild Mommen, Generali Foundation, Wien, Austria.
2006 The Secret Public. The Last Days of the British Underground 1978-1988. Kunstverein Munich. Germany.
Art Link. Dötenborgs Konsthall, Götenborg, Sweden.
2007 What Does The Jellyfish Want?. Museum Ludwig, Köln, Germany.
The Secret Public/ Last Days of the British Underground 1978-1988.Institute of Contemporary Arts, London.
Centre of the Creative Universe. Liverpool and the Avant-Garde.Tate Liverpool, Liverpool.
Panic Attack/Art In The Punk Years, Barbican Art Gallery, London.
Art Link, Göteborgs Konsthall, Göteborgs, Sweden.
Beyond The Wall, Stiftung Brandenburger Tor, im Max Liebermann Haus, Berlin.
2008 Monde e Terra, La collezione del FRAC Corsica, Museo d’Arte Provincia di Nuoro, Italy,
Volksgarten, Die Politik der Zugehörigkeit’, Kunsthaus Graz, Graz, Austria.
Be(com)ing Dutch, Vanabbemusem, Eindhoven, Holland.
Oh Girl It’s A Boy!, Kunsverein Munich, Munich.
Punk No One Is Innocent, Kunsthalle Wien, Wien, Austria.
Manifesta 7, Rovereto Italy.
Soziale Diagramme. Planning Reconsidered, Künstlerhaus Stuttgart, Germany.
Cold War Modern, Design from 1945 to 1980. Victoria & Albert Museum, London.
Social Interactions: Beth Campbell/Stephen Willats, Seiler + Mosseri-Marlio Galerie, Zurich, Switzerland.
Eclectic, FRAC Basse-Normandie, Caen, France.
Building Dwelling Thinking, curated by John Slyce, Laura Bartlett Gallery, London.
The Art of Participation 1950 to Now, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, California.
2009 Modernologies, Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona.
My Yard, British Council Collection Exhibition, curated by Jeremy Deller and Alan Kane, Whitechapel Gallery, London.
Revisiting the Shaping of the Social since the 20th Century, Central Museum Utrecht.
At the Edge British Art 1950 – 2000, Touchstones, Rochdale.
Die Moderne als Ruine, Kunstmuseum, Lichtenstein.
Die Moderne als Ruine, Generali Foundation, Vienna, Austria.
Oppositions & Dialogues, Kunstverein Hannover, Germany.
An Eye for an Eye, Glucksman Gallery, University of Cork, Ireland.
enter new comment
Please, be adviced that you are entering your text into a database, not into a social network! By entering a comment, you add to the database. We much appreciate comments making us aware of errors or deficiencies.