INKdialogues

Ink Dialogues with Qin Feng and Michelle Fornabai, is on exhibit  at the Bruce Museum.  The exhibition “Tales of Two Cities: New York & Beijing, focuses on two of the world’s leading centers of art, New York and Beijing, and offers a visual pairing of five New York-based artists with five Beijing-based artists. The 10 artists have been engaged in different global, cross-cultural, artistic dialogues over the course of two years via email, Skype, and in-person meetings.

“Watching Michelle Fornabai and Qin Feng communicate silently through the brush helped to open my mind to the myriad possibilities of visual dialogues between artists from very different artistic backgrounds,” Qing explains. “After discussing this idea with the other curators and advisors of this exhibition — Michelle Y. Loh, John Rajchman and Sarah McNaughton — a decision was made to expand on this theme by seeking out more opportunities to pair artists from disparate cultures.”


Tales of Two Cities: New York and Beijing runs through August 31st

By Leslie Yager

Heads up! Step inside the Bruce Museum and don’t forget to look up. The resident bird who descends from skylight remains in his place, but the foyer has been transformed around him.

Artist Lin Yan used white and gray sheets of paper for an installation in the lobby rotunda and skylight, extending the “Tales of Two Cities: New York and Beijing” exhibit all the way to the museum’s entrance.

Throughout the exhibit, complimentary artworks by New York-based artists are paired with those of Beijing-based artists. The exhibit, curated by Pan Qing, Michelle Y. Loh and Sarah McNaughton, is an experiment in blurred outlines and crossed stories.

Artists were matched based on their artistic processes and issues related to their urban environments.

Interim director of marketing and communications, Karen Schwarz said that Loh and McNaughton, who live in New York City paired artists together, not to create collaborative pieces, but to pair pieces with the same feel.

http://www.greenwichfreepress.com/around-town/tales-of-two-cities-meets-in-the-middle-at-bruce-museum/

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Li Taihuan’s oil on canvas features images obscured by what appears to be pollution. Credit: Leslie Yager

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Kronschlaeger assembled his installation in the museum after having created the individual boxes out of tiny painted sticks.

Michelle Fornabai’s artwork uses ink on piano rolls. Credit: Leslie Yager

Michelle Fornabai’s artwork uses ink on piano rolls. Credit: Leslie Yager

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Artist Lin Yan used white and gray sheets of paper for an installation in the lobby rotunda and skylight,

 

 

 

 

The cubes of Grid Structure #1

Grid Structure #1 photographs of the individual cubes by Paul Mutino

Grid Structure #1 photographs of the individual cubes by Paul Mutino

In total, there are 22 cubes that make up Grid Structure #1 currently on view in Tales of Two Cities: New York & Beijing at the Bruce Museum. That equals over 6,500 sticks made from bass wood and over 24,000 sides of each stick to stain. It was a daunting task but an exciting exercise to pull together the different color combinations and geometric and abstract forms. Each angle of the cube creates an entirely new visual experience. Here is a selection of photographs of the individual cubes by Paul Mutino.

http://aloiskronschlaeger.wordpress.com/2014/06/12/the-cubes-of-grid-structure-1/

NOT SO LOST IN TRANSLATION

Written by GEORGETTE GOUVEIA, WAG Magazine

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Lin Yan’s “City View #3” (2012), Xuan paper and ink. Courtesy of the artist and Amy Simon Fine Art, Westport. Photograph courtesy of the artist.

For more on the exhibit and programs, including “China Family Day” (June 15), visit to brucemuseum.org.

At first glance, New York City and Beijing might not seem like the most natural pairing. Talk to Far East experts and they’ll tell you that New York City is more like Shanghai – a financial capital and great going-out town. Whereas Beijing pairs up nicely with Washington, D.C. as both are actual capitals.

“But New York and Beijing have the largest concentration of artists,” said Susan Ball, deputy director of the Bruce Museum in Greenwich. “Also, New York is the capital of the art market. … The New York sales are the most important.”

And so we have “Tales of Two Cities: New York & Beijing,” a provocative, richly textured show through Aug. 31 that’s about the dialogues and disorientation created by globalization.

It began when Cristin Tierney of the Tierney Gardarin gallery in Manhattan introduced Ball and her Bruce colleagues to exhibit curators Michelle Y. Loh and Pan Qing. They and advisers Sarah McNaughton and John Rajchman had an idea for an exhibit that would pair New York-based artists with Beijing-based ones. Qing had done this on a smaller scale when she put together a show of works in ink by Michelle Fornabai and Qin Feng at Columbia University’s Studio-X in Beijing during the summer of 2010.

They’re in the Bruce show as are Joan Snyder and Wei Jia, whose canvases are concerned with the dense layering of materials; Alois Kronschlaeger and Lin Yan, who’ve created site-specific installations for the Bruce; Jorge Tacla and Li Taihuan, whose paintings explore the effects of urbanization; and Simon Lee and Chen Shaoxiong, whose mixed media works consider the nature of time as they reinvent the cinematic.

These are not collaborative works but pairings of complementary, parallel pieces by artists who have connections to other places. Fornabai and Feng have studios in Boston as well as New York and Beijing respectively. Lee is from the United Kingdom. Tacla has studios in New York and Santiago, Chile.

The pairs communicated via email, telephone and Skype as well as in person, sometimes with translators. (Indeed, the exhibit would not have been possible without mass media and transportation.)

“It depended on the pairs,” McNaughton said at the press preview. “Some like Lin Yan and Alois (Kronschlaeger) went to each other’s studios.”

Their site-specific installations are the most dramatic examples of the pairs as complements. Kronschlaeger has contributed a skyscraper of red, white and blue cubes that play with light. It’s the yang to Yan’s yin – a chandelier of casually crumpled paper held together with push pins from which a fierce white bird emerges.

Sometimes the artists didn’t communicate at all, at least not verbally as a film of Fornabai and Feng working side-by-side demonstrates.

They illustrate the concept of moku – “the artist is ultimately revealed in ink.”

“I feel we understood each other,” Fornabai said, “and we never exchanged any words.”

Fornabai’s 2013 installation “Concrete Poetry: Digging to China (Holes),” which looks like a 3-D brush painting with mirrors suspended above it, plays with the expression that if you could dig a hole deep enough, you’ll come out in China. Fornabai is intrigued by the idea of being upended on the far side of the world. (Hence the mirrors.) The disorientation hinted at in this work, a theme throughout the exhibit, is a companion of urbanization and globalization. Tacla’s paintings “Rubble 10” (2007) and “Altered Remains 04” (2011) – which consist of adding then subtracting acrylic and oil paints and marble powder from canvases – depict disintegrating cities. They’re juxtaposed with Taihuan’s oils on canvas “Beijing 2013” and “Misty Beijing” (2013-14), in which the city is swathed in pastel, Impressionist pollution.

“This one is even more directly responding to the pollution in Beijing,” co-curator Loh said, referring to “Beijing 2013,” a work that consists of 12 square paintings. “One painting couldn’t convey the chaos he’s experienced.”

It’s not just pollution, urban life, travel and spontaneity that “blur the lines,” as Loh puts it, but the passage of time. Lee’s “Mother Is Passing. Come At Once.” (2013) uses lenticulars – images that convey the illusion of depth and movement, made in this case with snapshots collected from different times and places. A boy in a bathing suit becomes an old man. A boy and a priest become two dogs.

But as Lee told the press, the audience causes the transformation by walking by the panels from this series or viewing them from different angles.

The dialogue in “Tales of Two Cities,” then, is not just between pairs of artists, or an artist and his work but between the work and the viewer.

Says Bruce deputy director Ball, “You have your own dialogue with each individual piece.”

http://www.wagmag.com/not-so-lost-in-translation/

iCreate curated by students in Greenwich goes on display at the Bruce Museum

The 2014 iCreate exhibit not only showcases student art, but connects two far away places.
“The Bruce Museum came to me to ask if I could bring some information to China for this project. I was very glad to bring the brochure and information to China,” said Greenwich High School teacher Lin Young.
“Asian Society has built up a ‘Confucius Classroom’ network of 100 exemplary Chinese language programs in the United States nationwide. Greenwich is one exemplary one. Each of our Chinese programs are partnered with a school in China. Greenwich High School is partnered with Tianjin No. 2 High School. These students art works are from Tianjin No. 2 High School,” said Yun Qin, the Senior Program Associate at the Asian Society.

 

World Science Festival Celebration Artist’s talks

Sunday, June 1, 2014, 1:00 – 4:00 pm
World Science Festival Celebration

Artist’s talks in the exhibition Tales of Two Cities: New York & Beijing throughout the afternoon with Lin Yan, Wei Jia, and Michelle Fornabai.  Talks are free with Museum admission and will begin just after the hour at the gallery entrance, and will last approximately 45 minutes.

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Michelle Fornabai Installation view of Synesthesia Series, 2013 Ink on piano roll, MP3 player, music box Dimensions variable Yuan Art Museum Beijing, China Photo courtesy of the artist

“Watching Michelle Fornabai and Qin Feng communicate silently through the brush helped to open my mind to the myriad possibilities of visual dialogues between artists from very different artistic backgrounds,” Qing explains. “After discussing this idea with the other curators and advisors of this exhibition — Michelle Y. Loh, John Rajchman and Sarah McNaughton — a decision was made to expand on this theme by seeking out more opportunities to pair artists from disparate cultures.”

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Lin Yan City View #3, 2012 Xuan paper and ink Courtesy of the artist and Amy Simon, Westport, CT Photo courtesy of the artist

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Wei Jia No. 0655, 2006 Gouache, ink, charcoal, and xuan paper on canvas 52 x 52 in. Courtesy of the artist and Amy Simon Fine Art, Westport, CT Photo courtesy of the artist

 

The Art Scene New York and Beijing Art Meet in Greenwich

Friday, 16 May 2014   By Arthur Stampleman , also a Bruce Museum Docent

 http://ryerecord.com/ae/the-art-scene-new-york-and-beijing-art-meet-in-greenwich.html

“Tales of Two Cities: New York & Beijing” is an engaging new exhibit of contemporary art at Greenwich’s Bruce Museum. The unusual concept for this show will make for a positive experience for both those that frequent contemporary art exhibits and those who avoid them. Visitors will see works with unique appeal that are reinforced by the setting.

The show presents two-dozen works by ten artists, most abstract, some representational. A range of media is represented, including painting, calligraphy, collage, installations, and photographs. The works range from a 1983 painting by Joan Snyder in the Bruce collection to pieces created by several artists specifically for this exhibition.

A&E-3 Snyder SilkJoan Snyder, Silk and Berries, 2013, Oil, acrylic, charcoal, burlap, silk, berries, herbs, dried flowers on linen, Courtesy of the artist and Tierney Gardarin Gallery, NY — Photo by Peter JacobsThe unusual aspect of the show was the pairing of artists starting two years ago, five New York-based and five Beijing-based. The co-curators and advisors of the exhibit are Michelle Y. Loh, Pan Qing, Sarah McNaughton, and John Rajchman, who are associated with Columbia University and art institutions in Beijing. Their aim was to create five different global, cross-cultural, artistic dialogues and collaborations and then present the works in an exhibition. The effort involved interaction via email, Skype, and in-person meetings, sometimes with the assistance of translators.
The artist pairings are:

Joan Snyder (NYC) and Wei Jia (Beijing);n Alois Kronschlaeger (NYC) and Lin Yan (Beijing); Michelle Fornabai (NYC) and Qin Feng (Beijing); Jorge Tacla (NYC) and Li Taihuan (Beijing), and
Simon Lee (NYC) and Chen Shaoxiong (Beijing).

Some of the New York-based artists hail from other countries, but they have long-established studios here.

The curators matched the pairs based partly on the kind of work that the artists do and their artistic processes, and on the type of dialogue(s) in which they suspected the artists might engage.

At the symposium at the show’s opening it was apparent that some dialogues worked better than others. But all the pairings succeed in helping viewers appreciate the work and technique of each artist beside that of his or her partner.

Highly abstract work with multiple layers of paint and other materials are central to the four pieces on display by Snyder and Wei. Snyder’s 1983 and 2013 works are both large oil and acrylic paintings, the later one with unusual materials such as berries and herbs. Wei’s gouaches feature charcoal, ink, pastel, and modern calligraphy.

Kronschlaeger and Lin will be the featured pairing for regular Bruce visitors because of how their site-specific installations transform gallery space. Kronschlaeger assembled a work consisting of large multicolor cubes made of basswood filling the height of the round atrium off the main gallery. He visited the museum a year ago and requested that the alcove’s windows be uncovered to highlight the work he planned. Lin positioned her site-specific piece evoking Beijing roof tiles to work best with Kronschlaeger’s installation, evidencing a good dialogue between these artists.

A&E-10 Shaoxiong InkCityFar left: Chen Shaoxiong, Ink City (from the Ink Animations series), 2005 ©Chen Shaoxiong — Photo courtesy of Pekin Fine ArtsThe team that provided the impetus for the Bruce exhibit was Fornabai and Qin who both work with ink, the former represented by unusual assemblages and the latter with modern calligraphy and screens. It grew out of a spontaneous collaboration between the two artists that was curated by Pan in Beijing in 2010. Watching the two artists communicate silently through the brush helped her see the possibilities of visual dialogues between artists from very different artistic backgrounds.

Man-made and natural disasters in the urban landscape, captured in acrylic or oil on canvas, are the subjects common to Tacia and Li. Tacia portrays events from earthquakes to the Oklahoma City bombing. He takes a photograph, transfers it to a canvas, and paints an image with one color for all shapes and another for all lines, creating what looks like photograph negatives. Li responds to pollution in China’s cities by painting city scenes in a style that seems like Impressionism covered by smog.

Chen and Lee both work with photographs. Chen photographs the chaos of city growth, which he transcribes into ink drawings assembled in a video. Lee also creates movement, but with seven lenticular prints, each one made up of two or three random photographs superimposed on one another.