Hanart TZ Gallery proudly presents 'The Delayed Everyday' by Lin Tao, a solo exhibition of lacquer art by Dalian-based artist Lin Tao, opening on 26 January 2018. The exhibition will run through 28th February.
As inspiration for his creative work, Lin Tao constantly searches for, collects and preserves stories from one of the most ordinary forms of popular media—the newspaper. Many local news articles and their accompanying photographs depict everyday mishaps endured by the common people: traffic jams, industrial accidents, governmental snafus, etc. These small disasters of urban life are generally regarded as trivial, without either political or historical significance, and are easily overlooked and forgotten. Yet Lin Tao believes they can act as reminders to his audience to pay closer attention to issues of social morality and the yearning for a better life. He reverses the tendency to trivialize these stories by transforming images from news photos into intricate, opulent works using complex, natural materials and techniques that have a long history: mother-of-pearl inlay and natural lacquer.
Traditionally, lacquer art featuring mother-of-pearl inlay is decorative and eye-catching, but Lin Tao takes this technique to a unique extreme, creating works in which the mother-of-pearl inlay covers the entire lacquer surface, so that the images are almost overwhelmed by, and even absorbed into, the opulent sheens of the inlay and the aesthetic beauty of the form. Yet the ultimate effect is to give the original, mundane news images a more powerful, vital form, so that they now seek to burst out from the picture frame and completely captivate our attention.
The labour-intensive nature of working with these materials and the beauty of the resulting images reflect the both artist's intention and his position: by giving a new voice through art to the insignificant incidents that make up the reality of the common man, Lin Tao engages in a renewal of reality, and infuses his works with a deep level of significance for our times.
Press release courtesy Hanart TZ Gallery.