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Art Taipei 2018 Ocula Report Art Taipei 2018 10 November 201810 Nov 2018 : Diana d’Arenberg for Ocula

'There is nothing more boring than the story of decline,' a journalist remarked at an art criticism panel I attended the evening before making the trip to see Art Taipei (26–29 October 2018). As I attended the opening night of Asia's oldest art fair, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, those words rang in my head. Wandering up and down...

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Charwei Tsai Ocula Conversation Charwei Tsai

Taiwanese artist Charwei Tsai's memorising and compulsive writing of the Heart Sutra—a Buddhist scripture that distills the wisdom of impermanence—is at the heart of her practice. Over the past ten years, Tsai has moved from writing to drawing, photography, and film—a selection of which is being presented at the Centre for Chinese...

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Crush at Para Site: What if you couldn’t have it? Ocula Report Crush at Para Site: What if you couldn’t have it? 10 November 201810 Nov 2018 : Hera Chan for Ocula

Drawn on paper by Oscar Chan Yik Long in gestural black ink strokes, Cupid (2015) greets visitors with a sinister toothy smile as they enter Para Site. The strikingly fearsome figure is positioned on the wall of the gallery's entrance, near one of Chen Dandizi's vertical neon tube lights, part of the series 'Tick Away' (2015), along which a...

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Loreta Sáez Franco was born in 1976 in Madrid, Spain. She started to paint when she was six years old in her parents’ fine art academy and since then she’s rarely been without paint in her hands. She also studied humanities and psychology in the Compultense University in Spain, which contributes strongly to the meaning of her creations. The artist spent a decade living between New York and London, where she updated her studies in Contemporary Art at Central Saint Martins University, London. She now lives and works in Hong Kong, but is constantly travelling around the world.

Drawing inspiration from the solemnity and spirituality of the Spanish Old Masters in combination with the effervescence and the ephemeral component of big cities where she develops her work (e.g. New York, Madrid, London, Hong Kong), Sáez Franco creates her own imagery that evokes a certain atmosphere of lost paradise. She uses her refined technique to approach deep philosophical and existential matters. Her paintings have no beginning and have no end. They transmit a certain poetic sensibility, at times full of serenity, at other times full of passion and anger.

The emotional weight of her latest works instinctively makes you feel drained by them. They have a psychological impact, each spatula touch contains a novel. It frees the imagination evoking a quasi-religious vision. The energy of Sáez Franco’s process is palpable; light plays across the painted surface echoing dynamism and vigor of its creation. Her strokes are created by a systemic body of movements, which contribute to the visual and spiritual impact of her works. Her paintings invite contemplation and are full of meaning.

Sáez Franco also makes videos bearing a certain reminiscence of German Expressionism, made using extracts from classic movies directed by Charlie Chaplin, Jean-Luc Goddard, Francois Truffault, Alain Resnais, Fritz Lang and Wim Wenders among others.

The core value of Sáez Franco’s art is best represented by the traditional Spanish aesthetics, which emphasize the harmony between human beings and religion.

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