Friday, May 23, 2008

China Town

Chinatown Galleries

Our mission this past Saturday was to visit at least 15 galleries all around Chinatown and write about 5 galleries that interested us the most.

One of the first galleries that stood out to our group was the China Art Object gallery, which exhibited the work of Seb Patane. The reason this artist stood out to us was because his work seemed creepy and dark. Several of his pieces had the same pattern of scratching or covering of the faces as well as the eyes of the figures. It was interesting how a lot of his pieces were randomly placed all over the gallery, leaning against the wall on the floor and so forth. This setting added to entire context of the show by creating disruption and confusion to the viewer.

The next stop was at the Happy Lion Gallery, which featured the artist by the name of Lauren Beck. At first glace, our group was not aware of the media, until we got closer to the pieces and we realized it was watercolor on paper that demonstrated high amount of color and detail. The art work was very surreal with several images of naked women and random settings. The women figures were the focal point for they seemed very overtly sexual and contained random bloody cuts all over their bodies.

Next, we went to the Black Dragon Society Gallery that exhibited the Heather Brown show. This show took our group back to basic concepts, such as referring back to basic shapes like lines and circles. Also, several of the work focused on the essential primary colors and symmetry. This show was refreshing to view because it demonstrated how the simplicity of using certain shapes and colors can create a huge impact on the viewer since these are elements that are easily recognizable.

Another gallery that our group found intriguing was The Box gallery that exhibited the artist Naotaka Hiro. There was a round shape ball that appeared to be made out of rice and hung down from the ceiling by a wire. Our group later came to know that over a 3-week period Hiro applied sticky rice to a skull in order to create a sphere, which are group was able to see only the end result. There’s a video that goes a long with this piece, which displays quick movements of male nudity, but the image is actually upside down, while the skull is right side up. Our group found this piece extremely random and confusing based on both the nudity and hanging skull, yet it made us want to question it and learn more about it, which at the end of the day serves a good purpose.

Finally, one of the most interesting galleries our group visited was the Peres Project Gallery that featured an installation piece by Terence Koh. As we entered the gallery we noticed a black floor with imprints of several white shoe marks that lead down a set of stairs to a basement. The floor of the room was completely covered with a thick layer of white powder from one side to the other. The white walls complimented the floor and along the side of a wall there were white painted objects, such cups and shelves. Our group found that walking through this powder and white atmosphere created a strong impression and fun experience. Later, we found out that the white powder was reference to cocaine, which we had already made the connection. Our group found that an installation piece conveys a message better than any picture because an experience is much more memorable.

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