HomeArt Call I Current ExhibitArchivesFeatured ArtistsAbout Us I ContactMembers



The title of this show reflects the philosophical nature of the works created by eight artists who are exploring the meaning of time and space. The term, borrowed from Henri Bergson, refers to a “real time” that is perceived qualitatively.  According to Bergson, no physical conception of time and space can explain the multiplicity of consciousness and imagination.  Historical time flows linearly in space, but personal time does not necessarily flow with future-oriented movement because our intuitive faculty, imagination, enables us to experience the flux of reality rather than a mechanized outlook of reality.  Thus reality is perceived in the multi-directional / multi-dimensional movement of time since imagination is not fixated.  The eight artists share their perceptions of time with various themes and styles. 

Harvey Chan’s mural and the triptych paintings capture the transformative stages of organic forms that are both familiar and uncanny.  Some figures bear resemblance to sea plants or human organs intertwined and tangled around each other, but at certain stages they seem to release their cohesive force as if breathing out.  The effect of the on-going process of tangling and untangling is the ecological landscape with its illustrative pattern being metamorphosed into unidentifiable entities. 

David Cheung’s quest for spiritual guidance is expressed in his Quanyin (Goddess of Mercy and Compassion) installation piece.  The goddess of compassion, Quanyin, refers to a Buddhist goddess who voluntarily delays her departure for heaven in order to save all human beings on earth.  In this piece, Cheung delivers Quanyin’s message of enlightenment on his white-on-white painting with a multi-media installation in the site-specifically built “shrine”. 

The natural curves and circles of grapevines in Sharon Cook’s “Linery for Sparse Trees and Long Peaks” is an extension of  the “linery” aspect of brush lines often shown in Classical Chinese paintings.  Cook tries to establish a “continuance of line” which represents the continuity of time traversing past, present and future.  Her lines are accentuated with small dots signifying either the departing or resting point of a brush.  And at the same time, the arrangement of dots appears to be a segment of her imaginative musical note where diverse forms in nature constantly go through the process of “becoming” with their own unique rhythms. 

Henry Ho’s calligraphy installation “the awareness of the existence” captures the moment of “instant consciousness” that is shaped by the energy being constantly exchanged between body and mind.  Ho, who is also a tai chi master, finds that calligraphy shares common philosophical ground with tai chi in terms of the control of bodily movement and the expression of consciousness in a unified state.  The small brush strokes are a trace of his moments of consciousness while the big body imprint on Xuan paper signifies the energy flowing out of his body and mind. 

Mark Isaac’s Stonehenge painting is a mysterious convergence of ancient time with modern time.  Isaac dates back to ancient time by depicting the image of Stonehenge and moves fast forward to modern time by incorporating electronic elements into his painting.  He juxtaposes these symbolic presentations of technological evolution and creation in a TV screen-like frame as a way of investigating the possibility of “accidental” evolutionary moments that question the validity of the scientific explanation of human progress.  

Seong-Kyoo Jeon’s fabric paintings, the “Hidden Relationship” investigate the relationship between culture and civilization.  Jeon sees his fabric support as a basis for re-establishing human existence and its engagement with the cultural/natural environment. The functional aspects of the clothes lose their meaning as the unfamiliar form of the hybrid entity starts to occupy our domestic spaces as if they are going through the process of cellular division. Jeon’s paintings are an example of ecological architecture, where the existence of being stands on the margin of nature, culture and society.

The animalistic world of ours is reconfigured by Joni Moriyama through the eyes of her ceramic meerkats facing what we can only see as an empty space, exclusive to a meerkat reality of time and collective understanding.  We perceive cyclical time through seasonal events and numeric systems, but these cultural and scientific indexes referring to reality lose their “artificiality” in the animal world.  Moriyama suggests a reality that exists outside human perception but alive and resonant in others.

Doris Sung’s “Wandering” explores the ancient Chinese philosophy of Daoism.  In Daoism, the meaning of being and existence is attained by negating the binary opposition between subject and object.  In the realm of Dao (path), there is no hierarchical order of things, and no one position is privileged over another.  Sung builds up layers of luminous painting surfaces by applying translucent medium and Chinese ink that illuminate a poetic vision of “boundless and free” Dao.

Through each artist’s work, we experience time flowing with various speeds and directions in a single space. 

Independent Curator, Jooyeon June Rhee BFA, MA

March 22, 2007

Jooyeon June Rhee is an independent curator and PhD candidate in Humanities at York University, Toronto, Canada. She studied art history and aesthetics, and her current research is modern Korean/Japanese Cinema and Literature. June has curated art exhibitions at public institutions and commercial galleries such as: The Limlip Art Museum, Gonju, South Korea. In Canada, the McMaster Museum of Art, Hamilton; Cambridge Art Galleries, Cambridge; Rodman Hall Art Centre, St. Catharines; Propeller Art Gallery, Deleon White Art Gallery, &, Energy Gallery, Toronto. She is also a board director of ARTi-Smoking, a non-profit organization that uses art and creative projects to promote public awareness of danger of tobacco uses.

<< >>