Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Displacement of the space - Do Ho Suh "The Perfect Home II" at the Brooklyn Museum

Do Ho Suh’s The Perfect Home II at the Brooklyn Museum deals with the sensitive relationship between personal and public space. By using Korean traditional transparent fabric and stitching, he delicately recreated the area where he lived in his New York apartment. It is the shifting of his territory, memory and time into the particular spot. By transferring the space, he created a nomadic place that transcends the general concept of a place that usually is fixed in a specific area and location. Transparent cloth reveals the inside and outside of the image that leads to the transforming of the original spaces that should naturally be heavy and hard looking. Audiences are given a new experience of mixing between in and outside the area and at the same time in the private and public territory. When The Perfect Home II was displayed at the Brooklyn Museum, the work was placed in a wide-open space, and above the piece, there was also wide-open slot existing. By giving this open field, Do ho’s personal space has been successfully put into the public area at the Brooklyn Museum individually to evoke imponderable memory and time of each viewer’s own particular spot and time.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Bruce Nauman, viscerally effecting installation, Disappearing Acts, MOMA PS1

Bruce Nauman’s Disappearing Acts at MOMA PS1 contains, among several, a focus on viscerally affecting installations. These works make the viewers feel frightened, trapped, or surrounded, while simultaneously feeling pleasure and excitement. These engaging installations ask the viewers to question what the artist wants the viewer to feel as opposed to see.

Double Steel Cage Piece (1974) elicits claustrophobia and joy with its 10-inch walkway between two steel cages. The thought that one is trapped causes a confluence of excitement and fear. Get Out of My Mind, Get Out of This Room (1968), a sound installation in an empty room, is composed of Nauman whisper-growling on top of a soundscape, projecting Americana introspection with a dash of horror. Clown Torture (1987), a video installation, features a clown crying while being tortured. It is gleefully disturbing, making the viewer identify with both the distress of the character and the satisfaction at the punishment of a dark cultural figure.

Nauman’s installations make the viewers question whether the art is the sound, the image, or the experience that the viewers have. The work causes a guttural, thought-provoking response that makes the viewing about the internal experience rather than the aesthetic of the work.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Petzel Gallery, Dana Schutz, Imagine Me and You

Dana Schutz is an artist from Michigan. The exhibition at Pretzel Gallery displays Schutz’s paintings and sculptures. The artwork shows Schutz’s inner conflicts and emotions by contrasting the pure background and vibrant portrait. The paintings are not focusing on the human scale. Instead of depicting every single details of objects, Schutz uses vibrant colors to show the emotions such as outrage and sadness. The bright, primary colors activate the paintings and makes the artwork more dynamic. Moreover, there is a big concept behind his topic of the series of paintings. There are many social dimensional problems has been explored from his paintings. The painting is like a scope to emphasis a few moments that can represent the issues in our society such as environment issues, personal emotions, and social relationships. The sculptures are the three dimensional expression of Schutz’s artworks. The deformed human body helps people to focus on, the expression of ignored social issues, the moment of Schutz is trying to emphasis on. Dana Schutz’s artwork is not trying to make any smooth and delicate moments. The roughness of the artwork is the aesthetic Schutz is presenting.

Matrixing by Bonnie Collura

Bonnie Collura, a distinctive American artist, who is currently working on biomorphic sculptures and installations among the mainstream of contemporary arts. She is an installation artist who frequently expressed rebellious natural instincts and providing feminist’s perspectives in her work. The exhibition ‘Prince’ at Smack Mellon impressed me a lot. The title ‘Prince’ firstly shows the male-dominated narratives while it conveys a sense of nobility.By designing form and allocating material, she challenged male icons in nowadays society that provides female outlook for a male figure. It intangibly transferred our common concept for a man from fierce, strong, solid to mild, slim, fluid. To generally view her works, most of them delivering a sense of contradicting and alternating on our common thinking on gender. Much like paintings, the exhibition expressed the multiple labels and icon on each art work. The emotion and minds were overlapping and interlocking in a single work.By varying loose fabric and high chroma colors, the art works present a matrix of 2-dimensional tint and 3-dimensional texture. Also, the high-ceiling gallery space itself becomes to part of exhibiting that provide large pendant lighting and large French widow for grabbing natural light which also can be regarded as 4-dimensional element that controlled temperature and atmosphere. In this way, the installations are becoming dynamic and flexible when these elements of the circumstance are changing.

Wind, Sunshine, and Flower by Alma Thomas

Born in 1891, Alma Thomas grew through the period of racial tensions. Due to discrimination and segregation, African American artists had a tough time making themselves recognized within the art world. They came together to demand changes, calling for “Black Power.” As a result of their activism, the mainstream finally started to recognize black artists. Alma Thomas became the first African-American woman to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Inspired by nature, Thomas focused on themes such as trees or gardens. She used subtle strokes in Wind, Sunshine, and Flowers. Small brushes and carefully designed highlights in loose stripes create curls and curves which could give viewers a feeling of floral in her work. (As shown below)
Personally, this is my favorite one in the Black Power section. Walking through the exhibition, I was amazed by the rich color and rhythmic power in Thomas’ work. As she said, “Through color, I have sought to concentrate on beauty and happiness, rather than on man’s inhumanity to man.” Although she was discriminated and criticized for her race, gender and her abstract style, Thomas still believed creative art is independent from any labels and continued her creative process.