Carrie Secrist Gallery is pleased to present our second solo exhibition with Derek Chan, Causation, on view from March 22 to April 26, 2014. Causation travels from the Roswell Museum and Art Center, New Mexico, following Chan’s yearlong participation in the Roswell Artist-in-Residence Program.
Derek Chan exhibits a body of paintings that investigate new processes, patterns and techniques. The Big Bang, a large-scale diptych, depicts a falling tower, an image of warning motivated by Judeo-Christian and occult philosophies. Chan’s golden fortress symbolizes the imbalances that man creates; he posits that manmade structures built upon greed and ego fail when confronted by forces of nature. The diptych acts as the nucleus in Causation, underscoring Chan’s inquiry into laws of cause and effect.
A triptych, Planets in Retrograde: Mercury, Venus and Mars, examines planetary and lunar cycles. Composed of acrylic paint, silver leaf, and dye-marbled collage, his iconic interpretations of terrestrial landscapes mimic the New Mexican desert panorama.
In addition, Chan exhibits three large-scale banners encrypted with glyphs and QR codes. The artist executes his marks on amate (ficus bark paper), the same material on which the Mayan peoples illustrated their codices. In particular, Chan references the Dresden Codex, the oldest known book from the Americas; through sequenced images and phrases, this codex illustrates pre-conquest observations on mathematics and astronomy.
Finally, Chan presents When the Universe Dreams, a new animation with sound that engages his interest in storytelling. The piece comprises drawings by Chan and sound elements created in collaboration with artists in Roswell and San Francisco.
Derek Chan participated in the 2013 Roswell Artist-in Residence Program, Roswell, New Mexico. Previous solo exhibitions include Causation, Roswell Museum and Art Center, New Mexico; A Way of Life, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, and Thirty and Eight, Golden Age, Chicago. Recent collaborations include the 2012 Community Supported Art program, Threewalls, Chicago; The Happiness Project curated by Tricia van Eck, Chicago; and Counting Time with Theaster Gates at the 2010 Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.
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