Art Projects Gallery is delighted to present “Beautiful Disaster”, Singapore artist Lee Ruixiang’s debut solo exhibition in Hong Kong. The exhibition showcases his latest works from his “It was beautiful while it lasted” series. Trained in printmaking, Ruixiang constantly challenges the notion of traditional printmaking with his innovative techniques and in pushing the limits of the materials that he works with.
Ruixiang’s works go beyond the two-dimensional expression of ink on paper as is typical of traditional printmaking. His works portray a sense of three dimensionality in his assemblage of cutouts and layering of the printed images. This method of composing and juxtaposition of the contents, motifs, and texts imbue Ruixiang’s works with a sense of hierarchy, movement and spatiality. Shadows forming along the boundaries of the cutout images blur the outlines and their relationships with the adjacent objects, enhancing the sense of three- dimensionality. This interplay of reimaging three-dimensionality into two and back into three again is a quality that the artist finds conceptually intriguing. To add a sense of touch, the artist also added in hand painted strokes of colors.
The “Beautiful Disaster” exhibition explores themes such as entrapment vs freedom and vulnerability vs love while reimagining the delicate balance between the beautiful and the bizarre in life, in which conditions and roles can interchange in the blink of an eye. He questions “Whether the decisions and actions that we make enable life to become more beautiful or is it just another disaster with a beautiful mask over it”. Indeed reading into Ruixiang’s works is akin to unveiling of layers and layers of masks and meanings that start to unravel as the viewers visually explore the dynamic and intricate details that define the artist’s works.
Lee Ruixiang graduated from the Nanyang Academy of Fine Art Singapore with a Diploma in Fine Art (Printmaking) in 2012. While he has exhibited extensively worldwide in group exhibitions and art fairs since 2011, the exhibition at Art Projects Gallery will be his debut solo exhibition.
My work is an exploration of various themes such as entrapment and freedom from my viewpoint. Employing various media and techniques such as monochrome woodcut printing, paper cutting, colored mixed-media with touches of hand painted strokes and stencils, my creations depict mankind in a unique aesthetic world with sacrilegious references to the story of Pandora’s Box.
The quest for beauty and perfection inspires us to work towards an objective, however, because due to the greed of society, we become irresistibly enslaved to the quest, where any trace of hope is but a contradiction. It gives the false illusion that one can change an unchangeable and inevitable future that will surely befall into disillusionment.
My works aim to challenge the viewers and audience to question about objectives in life and our roles in the society. Whether the decisions and actions that we make enable life to become more beautiful or is it just another disaster with a beautiful mask over it.
Although personal and largely autobiographical, these works address universal journeys and experiences, prompting viewers to reflect on the stories that define their own real and imagined lives.
The works may be expressive of brutality and animosity, but on the contrary to me, it is about the vulnerability and love between human beings. Amongst chaos, love can torment. My works divulge a fascination with the interchangeability of power, for example, when the bullied becomes the bully. On that note, it reveals the fabrications of the interchangeability, the weaknesses and volatility of the human mind and ego, of which at times would lead to turbulent barbarity. Alas, the artworks capture the irony that unequivocally impresses on our minds; fear is the root cause of aggression that inevitably festers thereby perpetuating a vicious cycle of savagery and capture the zeitgeist of the early 21st century. Though the world has evolved, aggression, oppression, and inequality remain bedfellows in current digital age, only disguised in different forms.
李瑞祥(b. 1989, 新加坡)於2012年畢業於新加坡南洋美術學院，主修板畫。自2011年開始，瑞祥便參與各國群展和藝術博覽，這次在藝途畫廊的展覽則是瑞祥的首度個展。