"SLOW WATER" - Seulgi Lee; "Thus to sleep is sweeter to wake" - Miranda Fengyuan Zhang
Mendes Wood DM is pleased to present Seulgi Lee's and Miranda Fengyuan Zhang's first solo exhibitions in Belgium with new work produced especially for this occasion.
Seulgi Lee (b. 1972 in Seoul, Korea, lives and works in Bagnolet, France) has developed a unique artistic practice that is immediately recognizable for its use of color, gesture, simple but elegant forms and performance. In her work, she continually explores ordinary objects, everyday language and natural forms through sculptures or installations that are distinguished by a formal aesthetic. Despite (or perhaps because of) her deference to bright, cheerful colours, Lee has described her sculptural practice as utilitarian, invariably linked to the power, fragility and contingency of the body: her works are tools, available at hand, used by those who are close. She is particularly interested in folk crafts and enjoys collaborating with master craftsmen, such as Korean quilters from Tongyeong and traditional basket makers from Mexico. Her artworks often employ a more user-friendly vocabulary to describe craft and challenge arbitrary distinctions between a formal, polished sculptural syntax and a more popular design or aesthetic...
Miranda Fengyuan Zhang (b. 1993, Shanghai, China, lives and works in New York City, USA) embraces cultures and ties them together using fragments of wool. The concept of “recycling” what is considered abandoned is inspired by her grandmother, who, during difficult times, unraveled jumpers to knit new ones, creating interesting shapes and unexpected color palette, which goes beyond the idea of recycling, and speaks of parental love and the connection between external and internal beauty. Inher work Zhang creates semi-abstract gardens, vaguely concrete landscapes, animal silhouettes, tranquil rivers and layers of colorful mountains, celebrating the mythology of life and nature.
In Zhang's work, material dominates, and ideas follow. She perceives the color, texture and temperature of the wool and lets the material tolled the way to mystical enlightenment. Her work creates a Garden of Eden, where she emerges herself in a kingdom of colors, cool evenings in the desert, or quiet afternoons over the lake. She further extends the palace of her memories to capture the hidden power within seemingly mundane objects. Like traditional Chinese ink paintings, Zhang’s way of working does not allow fixing or adjusting, but rather is an improvised process lead by momentary inspiration and technical skills. Although the works do not portray the east, her artistic thinking is innately eastern.
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About Mendes Wood DM
Mendes Wood DM was founded in 2010 by partners Felipe Dmab, Matthew Wood and Pedro Mendes with the intent to exhibit international and Brazilian artists in a context conducive to critical dialogue and cross-pollination. Central to the gallery’s program is a concern for regional difference and individuation while fostering cosmopolitanism and collaboration. Inspired by a belief that artistic practices broaden the scope of human agency and have the power to both touch and change the world, Mendes Wood DM cultivates a program premised on conceptualism, political resistance and intellectual rigor.
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