Condo Shanghai 2019
Duration_ July 13–August 24, 2019
Opening_ Saturday, July 13, 2019, 6–8 PM
Antonia Kuo, Ni Hao, Shen Han, Shi Jiayun
Special Project by Liu Yin
ONE AND J. Gallery
Bob Kil, Suyoung Kim, Nikki S. Lee, Seung Yul Oh
ltd los angeles
Arocha & Schraenen, Felix Beaudry, Daniel Garcia, Margaret Haines, Salomón Huerta, Nova Jiang, Nik Kosmas, Lesley Moon, Carter Mull, Evie O’Connor, Douglas Rieger, Ben Tong, Marian Tubbs, Faye Wei Wei
Gallery Vacancy is pleased to participate in the second edition of Condo Shanghai, hosting ONE AND J. Gallery from Korea, and ltd los angeles. The collaborative exhibition will run from July 13 to August 24, 2019. The three galleries will each occupy one floor of the three-story gallery space to present an international array of artists honoring the spirit of Condo, which takes its name from “condominium” and encourages the evaluation of existing models, pooling resources and acting communally to propose a more conductive environment for experimental gallery exhibitions to take place internationally. Gallery Vacancy, as the hosting gallery, will present five artists: Antonia KUO (b. 1987), NI Hao (b. 1989), SHEN Han (b. 1988), SHI Jiayun (b. 1992), and a special project by LIU Yin (b. 1984).
Antonia Kuo’s work stems from the transformation of images, materials and objects—a string of re-representation where things are gained and lost in iterative translation. In Untitled, she used gridded objects as templates and traced their outlines with a razor blade. The grids serve as a structure for process and permutation, variation in development—the incision is a starting point for the chemistry to permeate the resist, a seam to begin its dissolution. Next to the doorway is a set of five uniquely folded (and unfolded) photogram on silver gelatin papers titled Conduit, revealing Kuo’s inherent interest in the chemical process in photography—the ability to record light and her actions through a process that relies on chance operations and unstable trajectories.
At the same time, what Ni Hao stages, in Structure Study I showing at the center of room, is an installation of the earliest work from his on-going ‘Structure Studies’ series. The familiarity of plastic flutes encourages spectatorship yet their crumpled nature disrupts the idea of any concrete definitions. When viewed on the TV screen, the project becomes a performance full of contradictions. Through interpreting scores made up of combinations of pie charts and line charts, performers blow into different combinations of melted recorder flutes and PVC pipes; and through the act of playing, cleaning, and reading, the instrument is sustained and continues to function. In Ni’s childhood in Hsin Chu, it is mandatory to learn recorder flutes that are implemented by the school for students to perform Taiwanese folk songs and Western classics. Unbeknownst to the children, their identities are thus constructed bit by bit through the appropriation of Western musical instruments and music education. Often times these instruments produce sound of distress more than actual music. However, the practice of recorder flute was repeatedly rejuvenated for the purpose of creating national identities or movements to manipulate the identities of children in the modern history.
Underscoring a sense of perplexity is Shen Han’s new painting, in which the sometimes hidden elements, once perceived, disguised, illuminates in its entirety. Constructed pigment patches, gestural lines and allusive spaces crumble and dismantle within the presented picture, whilst the illusionary movement and intriguing narration of imageries vaguely and gradually emerge among multiple perspectives, and thus sits Shen’s interest in the manipulation of broken spaces and the nuance of figuration and abstraction. The viewer’s expectation towards Shen’s painterly expressions articulates the compulsion of language modeling in which the unspoken is to be predicted by indicating the comprehensible. The chaos created by the painted forms completes and compromises in the conspiracies of the painter and the viewer, an explicit mystery in which insufficiency is always abundant.
Through the variant of lights and shades, the works by Shi Jiayun included in this exhibition marks the diversion and diversification of painted image become visible in the illusionary representational reality. Wood Grain next to Shen Han’s paintings depicts a light-colored picture plane divided in four by a rigid dark structure, responding in its geometric form to the vintage window glasses in the same room. Of its bordered image, Shi deliberately painted the surface of a piece of wood plank, bridging the two contrary natures of materials in one subject matter. Green #4 continues the same discourse while an imagined field of green is given its vitality only by the flooding black brushes rampant from the edges of the canvas. Regardless of the uncertainty of her subject as an image, an object, or pure imagination, Shi Jiayun composes in a restraint and introverted way that is in relation of forms beyond her immediate experiences. The most intriguing part may be the imminent impulsions embedded in her works as they manifest a feeling of liberation, while constituting a constant process of emotions adjustment, control, and judgment.
Special Project by Liu Yin
Showing in the small room between the second and third floor is a special project by Liu Yin. While this kind of shed-like room, traditionally called “tingzijian,” usually functioned as storages in the past, it is re-invented by Liu Yin as a continuously extending project room, in which a confined space is transformed into a detached viewer experience. Through her macaron color palette and signature manga-style sparkly eyes, Liu starts the conversation of transforming idealized fantasy into the cruelest reminder of man-fractured perfection. In this recent work Rice Field, 2019, Liu depicts a vast of green in the picture which suggests the foreseeable harvest season while the farming cattle seems to finish its task and enjoy its moment strolling around. A man who stands up still in the foreground waving his hand catches people’s attention and immediately differentiates himself from the two who bend and glean in the distance in the field. From the way this man wears, a belt tightening a pair of high-waist-trousers with a white shirt tucked in implicates his age and his occupation not likely of an agriculture professional but of a civil governor or a politician. Disarmingly friendly, the man’s bubbly eyes look right into the spectator and his welcoming, waving hand altogether form an image that seems to be gentle, tolerant, and sometimes too good to be true.
Liu Yin found this image on the newspaper and changed the facial expression of this politician who wore a stroll hat and came to the field to show his affinity to the labor class for propaganda purposes. She uses and modifies found images in her drawings as a way to examine the tremendous swatch of visual information that has long been part of our lives, of which intrusiveness has risen to historic heights thanks to the pervasiveness of the smartphone. Her experiments with news images, an important means to visually record and disseminate what is happening around us, constitute a raw database that makes visual critique and research possible.