Ruth Bachofner Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of paintings by Gina Han. There will be a reception for the artist Saturday, July 26, 5 - 7 PM.
Educated at Claremont Graduate University in Southern California, Gina Han employs traditions of Western art in her abstract paintings and infuses them with an Asian pop sensibility. Han’s work is driven by an effort to navigate the contradictory forces entrenched in the confluence of Eastern and Western sensibilities. “The nature of my paintings and installations,” Han states, “seemingly appear to be within the realms of abstract art, based in the western art tradition. However, the elements in these works come from a different place. Influences of East Asian pop culture of joining its dichotomized ideals of cuteness and violence, sweetness and sexiness, and other dialogues can be seen in the works. Through the use of sweet colors and thick section of impasto - which look like something you want to eat, but if you eat too much, it will make you sick - reflect this dichotomy.
Han creates her work by pouring amorphous daubs of acrylic over various surfaces. Some panels hold numerous palm-sized forms that seem to float and mutate around one another while others contain a single thirty-six-inch mass of iconic color. Han also uses her forms in a site-specific installations where the putty-like forms come off the panels and into the physical space of the gallery, animating the entire space with color.
In this exhibition, Han’s plastic daubs collect on a variety of surfaces. Wood panels and gallery walls and floors create varying contexts for the shapes, enriching the artist’s explorations into dichotomies and scale. The recurring shapes reinvent themselves through Han’s strategic placement - some are formed into architectonic grids, while others splay freely across the floor. In each context, the shapes and medium take on a different character. On the floor, they recall organic systems, amoebas or seeds, while on gridded panels, the acrylic’s industrial plasticity becomes emphasized. Stuck directly to the wall, the scale shifts and becomes landscape-based, recalling cyclonic whirls or cascading matter.
“My artistic goal,” Han continues, “is to explore the possibilities of chance and expansion within my installations and paintings. Primarily the rearrangement of individual panels or acrylic self contained organic shape congeals into a unpredictable whole when given a welcoming space whether it be outdoors or within the gallery/museum walls. The concept of chance as stated in Taoism, which is instinctually based within finding the solution in nature, reflects my source and inspiration in art making.”