Siyuan Tan “Face Off”

Fou Gallery

poster for Siyuan Tan “Face Off”

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Fou Gallery presents Siyuan Tan’s solo exhibition Face Off. Siyuan Tan’s work focuses on the confrontation between virtual and physical spaces. His work takes a post-internet approach by employing tangible materials and representational images to pose questions of critical reflection to society, and modes of perception, following the widespread adoption of the internet.

Tan’s work utilizes tangible media and forms to explore tensions between two coexisting but “opposing” spaces. Tan was raised in Liaoning Province, Northeast China, which is famous for its coal mining industry. Tan’s experience growing up, including childhood memories of a deceased parent’s spirit, made him aware of the imaginative space that co-exists, intertwines, and sometimes conflicts with the physical space he occupies. His practice as a sculptor further deepened his understanding of these two spaces, which the artist describes as a virtual, “nihilistic space” that transforms into the visible—the physical and concrete form that arises during the process of making molds.

Face Off presents the artist’s continued interest in coexisting spaces. The two sculpted figures attempting to tear each other apart—drawing inspiration from the aftermath of WikiLeaks—alludes to the virtual, seesaw-like fight between individuals and authorities over the power to claim the truth. The miniature and fragmented replicas of the ancient miracles are a response to the replacement of monumental physical existences by their flattened online screenshots. The clearly-printed proverbs set against the vaguely-sprayed backgrounds of daily clichés legitimate the digital fragments as a core of daily life, rather than the layered, sensory, and immersive experience people physically inhabit. With notorious public figures, de-canonized icons, and dried-out daily moments, the exhibition puts together a parody of contemporary life, in both the virtual and concrete domains, wherein every spectator would, at some point, find a way to interlink themselves.



from May 25, 2019 to June 23, 2019

Opening Reception on 2019-05-25 from 17:00 to 20:00


Siyuan Tan

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