How alive do you feel, being alive?
This question seems strange, almost excessive, if one considers the never-ending stream of interface and devices created to enhance and stimulate one’s experience of reality.
But when was the last time your mind was emptied of clutter and your senses savored an emotion to its unadulterated fullest? Could you recall that state of pure knowingness, where you were “one” with yourself – no repressions, no distractions, and no intermediaries?
– John Clang
Pékin Fine Arts is pleased to present Singaporean artist John Clang’s exhibit “(Re) Contextualizing My Mind”, comprised of new photography and video work. Clang, who is New York City based, will be present at the Hong Kong opening. This is Clang’s 2nd solo exhibit with the gallery and his 1st in the Pékin Fine Arts Hong Kong gallery space.
One of Singapore’s most critically acclaimed young artists, Clang’s work comes out of his daily observations as a New York-based Singaporean, inspired by themes of time, displacement and urban existence. His work ruminates on his experience of city dwelling within a subtly changing urban landscape that seeks to navigate between cultures and continents. Clang’s practice examines and raises questions of the world he lives in, providing pictorial documentation as intimate mental reflection of one man’s mind. He records an emotive contemplation of possibilities arising from the mutability of perception and reality in daily life – sentiments at once both personal and universal.
(Re) Contextualizing My Mind is an on-going series begun in 1996 , exploring the intangible and fleeting aspects that precipitate human consciousness in an attempt to record with photography the artist’s own “mindscapes”. From the artist’s perspective, it is not his eyes scrutinizing but rather, his mind seeing. Created in different times of his life over a variety of states of mind, the images invite viewers to meditate on the notion of sight, sensation and perception, and their many accompanying codes and signifiers. Like a sleeping arm or leg awakened with a gentle tap, the series delivers the same tingling sensation of revival. Capturing images of the mundane and prosaic as sensual invitations for viewers to blindfold other sense organs, and focus solely on the richly layered world Clang constructs, in varied states of mind, over different moments in his life.
Works from Being Together (2010-2012) are also on exhibit. This well-known series of family portraits uses Skype technology as live recordings able to “reunite” Singaporean family members separated by continents, where a new-wave diaspora has become the modern family norm. For Clang, family members dis (membered) through time and space, can be re (membered) and made whole again through the use of a third space, a virtual site able to re-assemble relatives within the photographic space that we call a “family portrait”.
Works from Being Together were exhibited in “Being Together: Family & Portraits – Photographing With John Clang” in 2013 at the National Museum of Singapore and are currently on exhibit in the group exhibit “Family Matters” at the Centre for Contemporary Culture Strozzina, Palazzo Strozzi, Florence, Italy. A large selection of works from the artist’s solo exhibit, Being Together, were acquired by and are now part of the National Museum of Singapore’s permanent collection.
John Clang lives and works in New York City.