Artist: Laurie Kang
Exhibition title: Channeller
Venue: Interstate Projects, New York, US
Date: December 14, 2018 – January 27, 2019
Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and Interstate Projects, New York
Flesh-colored surfaces envelop Laurie Kang’s coiling sculptures. Composed of flexible metal tracks, photographic paper and film, the twisting structure loosely frames the media creating a series of deconstructive, ambiguous vistas. A practice of material misuse and boundary transgression, Kang uses industrial materials in a sensitive way to probe definitions of body.
The sculptures that cut through the space are pliable; the metal portion is a skeleton that guides the work in multiple, associative directions. Viewable from each side and able to be walked through, the question of negative space is null; they elude what is interior, exterior, context or content. By extension, the viewer is implicated in their own unfixed spatial relationship to the work.
In turning the ‘body’ of the sculpture inside out and repositioning its parts, Kang works at the boundaries that limit how bodies are understood. The references to interiority locate her work in non-binary spaces where structures around body politics can be questioned and reimagined (1). This is materialized through the photographic paper and film which will continuously change as they are exposed to the environmental light at Interstate Projects. Kang is interested in the potential of material that is ‘misused’, and through this process, suggests working through -as opposed to within- the structures we critique (2).
The sculptures are not singular, finite bodies. Referring to them as “mutated gardens” or “frayed double helixes” her process of building, weaving, imaging and tearing is deeply personal, and subtly cites the multiplicity of knowledge she has inherited from her familial matriarchs. In the presumed gaps of consciousness between generations and places, Kang sees a space where varied untraceable sites of labor from multiple bodies can commune, and transgress boundaries together.
– Magdalyn Asimakis
1) Kang references Trinh Minh-ha’s questioning of ‘voids’ as negative space, instead considering it as an area of productivity and spirituality. In Minh-Ha, Trinh, Not You/Like You: Post-Colonial Women and the Interlocking Questions of Identity and Difference, 1997.
2) A reference to Haraway,Donna J., Staying with the Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene, 2016.
Laurie Kang is an artist living in Toronto. Kang has exhibited internationally at Topless, New York; The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Cooper Cole, 8-11, The Loon, Gallery TPW, and Franz Kaka, Toronto; L’inconnue, Montreal; Carl Louie, London; Wroclaw Contemporary Museum, Wroclaw; Raster Gallery, Warsaw; Camera Austria, Graz; and Tag Team, Bergen. She was recently artist in residence at Rupert, Vilnius; Tag Team, Bergen; The Banff Centre, Alberta; and Interstate Projects, Brooklyn. She holds an MFA from the Milton Avery School of the Arts at Bard College.