Paper and Process 2 is API’s second exhibition exploring artists’ widely varied uses of paper as medium. Historically storied, paper also sets itself apart as one of the most vital and flexible mediums used in contemporary art. The artists of “Paper and Process 2” have each spent significant portions of their careers exploring paper’s potential and include Jean Shin, Tchah-Sup Kim, Jian-Jun Zhang, In-Hyung Kim, Richard Tsao, and Il Lee.
Jean Shin uses digital embroidery on paper to create the triptych “Celadon Threads.” The two side panels of this work capture in thread patterned fragments of celadon pottery. Similarly, the central panel shows whole in stitched outline pottery shapes of the type from which Shin collected broken pieces to create her mosaic wall work “Celadon Remnants,” a public commission by the New York MTA Arts for Transit.
Tchah-Sup Kim works with crisscrossing fine lines in his etching “Between Infinities” to create an abstract field of subtle variation. This elongated horizontal field, or band, reveals organic looking irregular forms at the far left and right of the band, like fine grained woodwork becoming unexpectedly unfinished and gnarled at edge, or, perhaps, like meticulously cultivated lands hemmed in by rugged coasts. Kim’s approach to abstraction comes out of works like “Triangle” of the same period–a highly detailed etching of rocks in a river bed–which explores the potential of mark making on paper through realism. The accurately depicted river rocks are a seamless construction created, as is the abstraction of “Between Infinities,” by contrasting bold abstraction with the most ephemeral of delicate lines and allowing the unmarked paper to act as the conveyance of light.
Jian-Jun Zhang’s photographs’ of his “Vestiges of a Process” series acknowledge their paper support–“rough” paper is used to hold the image and draw attention to itself. Further, the images in this series of Shanghai Shi-Ku-Men architecture, a blending of European and Chinese styles from the 20’s and 30’s, are stamped with official looking red markings that read “tear down.” Once existing in consort with real buildings marked for destruction, now–that the buildings are gone–Zhang’s art works are the most real thing left even as they announce themselves as only paper. It is this paper’s interplay with the real that points to the fluidity between idea, thing, document and memory.
In-Hyung Kim uses the textures of paint and graphite to give life to the texture of paper’s surface. Her expressionistic rendering of natural forms and light-touch give a freshness to her work that suggests each piece of paper has just been marked moments before the arrival of the viewer’s gaze. In these powerful, small format works, under ten inches square, a bird or plant may be featured or as in “Untitled 1707” the confident brushwork and bold marking bring fundamental form into action.
Richard Tsao saturates paper with purples, reds and other rich hues in a multistep monotype process. Found items from nature, such as leaves, provide a starting point to create bold silhouettes or barely discernible vegetal forms. Captured on paper, in dramatic inter-plays of contrasting values and bold color, pigment seems yet in dynamic motion.
Il Lee presents white forms in a field of blue ballpoint lines. The white ground of the paper and the inked surface are distinct yet of equal weight. Through labor the ink becomes the paper and a modulated yet cohesive surface tension is created. Further, in the work “SW-096,” Lee uses tape to block out white forms and disrupt the viewer’s appreciation of his craft. The flowing lines of his pen become contrasted with the abrupt white edge created by the removed tape. Lee wants to announce the artifice in his process. The taped line creates a rupture in his masterly technique to snap the viewer awake, to remove seduction, to have the viewer consider anew ink, paper, light, form.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Jean Shin was born in Seoul, Korea. She lives and works in New York. Recent solo museum exhibitions include: Jean Shin: Common Threads, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC (2009); Jean Shin: TEXTile, Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia (2006); and Projects 81: Jean Shin, Museum of Modern Art, New York (2004). Select group exhibitions: Second Lives, Museum of Arts and Design, New York (2009); RED HOT, Museum of Fine Art, Houston (2007); One Way or Another, Asia Society Museum, New York (2006); Make it Now: New Sculpture in New York, Sculpture Center, New York (2005); Counter Culture, New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York (2004); and Open House, Brooklyn Museum, New York (2004). Selected collections: Museum of Modern Art, NY; Chase Bank, NY; Citicorp, NY; New Museum of Contemporary Art, NY; Asia Society and Museum, NY; and Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia, PA.
Tchah-Sup Kim was born in Yamaguchi, Japan. He lives and works in New York and Korea. Upcoming and recent solo exhibitions include: the Lee In-Sung Award Exhibition, Mesena Hall, Daegu, Korea (2009); Lee Jung-sup Artist Award Exhibition, Chosun Daily Newspaper Gallery, Seoul, Korea (2003); a retrospective Kim Tchah-Sup’s Odyssey, Marronnier Art Center, Korean Culture & Art Foundation, Seoul (2002); and a group exhibition A Decade of Transition and Dynamics, National Museum of Contemporary Art, Kwachon, Korea (2001). Selected collections: Museum of Modern Art, NY; Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; Brooklyn Museum, NY; Library of Congress, DC; Virginia Museum of Fine Art, Richmond, VA; National Museum of Contemporary Art, Korea; and Chase Manhattan Bank Art Collection, NY.
Jian-Jun Zhang was born in Shanghai, China. He lives and works in New York and Shanghai. Recent exhibitions include: History in the Making: Shanghai 1979-2009, Shanghai, China (2009); Butterfly Dream, Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art, Shanghai (2008); Towards Abstraction, Zendai Museum of Modern Art, Shanghai (2008); The 5th Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, Korea (2004); Jian-Jun Zhang: Mountain and Water, Art Projects International, New York (2003); Zhang Huan, Weihong and Jian-Jun Zhang, Diverseworks, Houston (2003); and Fourth Shanghai Biennale, Shanghai Art Museum, Shanghai (2002). Selected collections: Uli Sigg Collection, Switzerland; Genentech, CA; JP Morgan, Hong Kong; Shanghai Art Museum, Shanghai; Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, China; and Frederick R. Weisman Foundation of Art, CA.
In-Hyung Kim was born in Seoul, Korea. She lives and works in Paris. Select exhibitions include Undergrowth, Art Projects International, New York, NY (2003); Marking: Drawings by Contemporary Artists from Korea, The Korea Society, New York (2003); New Artists 2000, International Kunstmesse Kongresshaus, Zurich, Switzerland (2000); Figuration Critique, Du Toit de la Grande Arche, Paris, France (1998); and Gallery Hyundai, Seoul, Korea (Window Installation, 1997).
Richard Tsao was born in Bangkok, Thailand. He lives and works in New York. Upcoming and recent exhibitions include: Nam (Water), H Gallery, Thailand (2010); Flooding, Art Link, Seoul, Korea (2008); Flood, Chambers Fine Art, New York (2005); Paper and Process, Art Projects International, New York (2004); Portraits, 100 Tonson Gallery, Bangkok, Thailand (2004); and The Inverse Mirror, Chambers Fine Art, New York (2003).
Il Lee was born in Seoul, Korea. He lives and works in New York. Recent solo exhibitions include: IL LEE, Gebert Contemporary, Santa Fe, NM (2009); IL LEE, The Vilcek Foundation, New York (2008); Il Lee: Ballpoint Drawings, Queens Museum of Art, New York (2007); Il Lee: Ballpoint Abstractions, San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, CA (2007); Il Lee: Ballpoint Works 1980-2006, Art Projects International, New York (2007); Paris/New York: Il Lee, Galerie Gana-Beaugourg, Paris, France (2005). Selected group exhibitions: On, Of or About: 50 Paper Works, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX (2009); NextNext Art, BAM, New York (2004); and Open House, Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn, NY (2004). Selected Collections: San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, CA; National Museum of Contemporary Art, Kwachon, Korea; Total Museum, Seoul, Korea; Duk-Sung Women’s University, Seoul, Korea; and the Hong-Ik University.
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