Amorphous shapes, tentacles, orchids, guns, machines – these are just some of the things that can be seen in Yu-Chen Wang’s complex and absorbing drawings. But the abstract pencil and watercolour markings could easily be mistaken for traces of a parallel universe or science fiction scenery. The fluid and wispy lines suggest mysterious architecture and superfluous floating islands from an unknown space or time. In I'm Going to Where You're Coming From (2008), a ‘boat-like’ structure is flowing through the sea or perhaps the sky – evocative of the boathouse currently visible on the rooftop of the Queen Elizabeth Hall. An orchid inexplicably grows out of the top of this surreal object, disrupting the size and scale of the vessel.
Made only with pencil, Wang’s latest series of works entitled Achromatic (2012) invites the viewer to take a closer look at the tiny details. Nuts and bolts, wires, flowers, and even strands of hair, smoke or droplets of water are intricately depicted. These biomorphic objects are all linked and work together, like bizarre sea creatures or molecules swimming in uncharted territory.
For Hayward Gallery’s Concrete café, Wang has been invited to create an ongoing assemblage which will change over the course of the exhibition. Coloured pencil drawings will organically mutate/develop into collage. Eventually, tentacles veer off the page to embrace parts of the café we usually ignore - a light switch, cables, plugs - and pieces of wood affix to the wall as extensions of the paper.
Join us for the culmination of this evolving work on 2 December 2012 in Dan Graham’s Waterloo Sunset Pavilion where there will also be a screening of Wang’s latest artist film The Splash and A Last Drop (2011) and the launch of her first artist’s book, The Song of the Machines (2012), published by Chinese Arts Centre, Manchester.
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