Yu Honglei: Everything is Extremely Important – There is Nothing That Will Not Come Back Again
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Curator: Aimee Y. Lin
Magician Space is proud to present Everything is Extremely Important: There is Nothing That Will Not Come Back Again – Yu Honglei’s third solo exhibition. For the exhibition the artist is presenting three perspectives: a video work in the inner room describe and scrutinize the artist’s anxieties regarding the ‘unspoken’ in sculpture; in the main exhibition room, a display of sculptural objects explore the possibility of narrative in a theatrical space; whilst viewed as a whole entity, the exhibition reveals an image of the artist’s work conditions.
The exhibition title alludes to the artist’s current approach to his art practice, making visible the concept of ‘recurrence’ – a daily phenomenon and a mental way of understanding a revelatory sense that inhabits both life and art. ‘Recurrence’ also functions as a keyword to unlock ideas within the exhibition, shedding light on a glimmer of clues left around different areas of the gallery space.
Sculpture is an art about the ‘object’. According to Yu Honglei, art comes from life; his work as an artist is derived from the everyday objects collected from his life to bring about and create an array of discursive new possibilities. Sharing the exhibition title, the video work instigates the opportunity for the artist to address sculpture’s ‘lack of speech’ in the form of an outburst that underlines his ‘anxiety to speak’ in art. The video consists of two narratives that construct an ingenious mirrored space. The first reveals the subjective narrative of the artist as both the ‘object’s founder and creator. The other part follows a narrative guided by different perspectives in the third-person. The same objects are expressed using different viewpoints and are interwoven with narratives created by this polyphony of voices. The sculptures in the main exhibition room are a presentation of new works; some of the works are featured in the video; and there is an inclusion of works previously exhibited before. Viewed together, the works on display in this room can be regarded as clues, but also as markers to the unfolding dialogic themes explored in the video. However, also functioning independently of the video, each of these objects posses their respective stories of the past and a voice to again instigate new discourses. Similarly, with these characters from different stories and in this new theatre, a new dialogue and plot can be generated to further lure audiences into producing their own narratives and stories.
Everything is Extremely Important: There is Nothing That Will Not Come Back Again provides us with a site to work and propose these questions to ourselves: in what way can we look at sculpture? In what way can Yu Honglei’s sculptures, as object-based objects, become new objects? Similarly, in what way can the dialogue among these objects develop new narratives? At the same time, this exhibition provides us with questions concerning the identity of the artist – namely, can an artist be capable of viewing the display of his own work?