Pékin Fine Arts: “Paralinear”, Group Exhibit Curated by Aric Chen
If the cultural representation of three-dimensional space has historically relied on perspectival systems—specifically, parallel perspective in the East and linear perspective in the West—then the question arises as to what current practices might say about our contemporary condition. Paralinear will include works in a range of media that construct, and reside in, a moment of spatial and psychic ambiguity.
In these works by Chinese and Asia-based artists, space is neither central nor irrelevant but rather formulated and fragmented as sites of orientation, disorientation and non-orientation. In some cases, spatial fields have been clearly diagrammed by the artist; in others, the viewer must do his or her part. Underlying this exploration, whether through its presence or absence, is the notion of the vanishing point—that elusive focal device, used in constructing perspectival space, that is always visible yet never within reach. Seen in the context of a linear worldview, the vanishing point becomes representative of progress, the final destination. But do we believe in progress and, if so, progress towards what?
- Aric Chen, Beijing, January 2010