Double Square Gallery is pleased to present the duo exhibition of Spanish artist Juan Zamora and Taiwanese artist Chen Wan-Jen, entitled ↻. Zamora and Chen made each other's acquaintance in 2012, when they were recommended by Spain's Ministry of Culture and Sport (MCD) and the Ministry of Culture, R.O.C respectively for the International Studio & Curatorial Program in New York. They became friends during the artist residency, exchanged and shared their experiences in life and art-making, hoping that they could one day produce an exhibition together.
Spanish artist Juan Zamora, whose art practice revolves around nature, employs a diverse range of media, including installation, painting and sculpture, to explore the coexistence and 'regenerative' relationship between nature, humankind and the earth. Chen Wan-Jen, on the other hand, mainly uses video and installation to capture repetitive and alternating fragments in life and embeds figures from the real world in the virtual space he creates, utilising the labor-intensive technique of digital collage to immerse the audience in an endlessly 'looping' world. After much discussion, the two artists have come up with the idea of using the ancient Greek symbol, '↻' (symbolising the Ouroboros), for the title of this duo exhibition. The symbol, denoting both the beginning and the end, has multiple meanings, and throughout history, has come to signify 'infinity,' 'cycle' and 'rebirth.' The exhibition, therefore, makes use of this multifaceted symbol as well as the creative dialogue between vastly dissimilar media to navigate the connection and relationship between humans and nature in contemporary society while conveying the artists' reflection on and sentiments towards life.
Presenting his first solo exhibition at Double Square Gallery, Juan Zamora adopts the theme of 'Emergence of Life,' and uses diverse media and expression, combined with music and design, to explore the existence of life and the idea of ecological sustainability in art practice through the triangular relationship between aesthetics, philosophy and nature. Zamora draws his creative inspiration from nature, formulating a poetically photorealistic style to bridge the distance between humankind and the natural world. His work, Emergence of Life, comprises 64 drawings. With perceptive observation and brilliant drawing technique, he exquisitely delineates intricate and complex microscopic organisms imperceptible to the naked eye. Another work, Honger, is constituted of leaves gnawed by caterpillars. He combines the holes on the leaves with sheet music, translating nature's sounds with the device of a music box. Through this exhibition, Zamora encourages the audience to review and rethink our relationship with nature, re-establishing humanity's relationship with the natural world via connections afforded by art.
After half a year, Chen Wan-Jen presents another solo exhibition at Double Square Gallery, which features his latest work of digital collage. The exhibition title, Edge Selection, is inspired by a basic function of drawing software, which was the first technique that Chen acquired in learning image post-production—a laborious process of repeatedly selecting needed images, cutting and pasting. In the making of video, the artist must assume the role of both scriptwriter and director, diving into an oscillating process between virtuality and reality. The eponymous work, Edge Selection, continues Chen's creative approach of aerial filming and utilisation of looping image. Capturing people sunbathing indoors and using matting technique he has brought to perfection, Chen aims to discuss how people cope with the new social situation and lifestyle in the period of a pandemic. According to the artist, 'people look like plants properly distanced by the spatial arrangement, which not only leaves behind habitual behaviour and understanding of social life in the past, but also creates an unprecedented impact in terms of what we see in daily life.' The work reveals a sense of novelty in daily life: through the artist's arrangement, the sunbathing people line up in an orderly fashion, signalling the reality of a generation with its prosaic blankness.
Press release courtesy Double Square Gallery.