Wilson Shieh: Chow Yun Fat's Fitting Room
06.03.2009 ˇV 26.04.2009

Osage Soho is pleased to present Wilson Shiehˇ¦s second solo exhibition with the gallery. Following his solo exhibition at Osage Shanghai in 2008, Shieh will present a new body of paintings and drawings at Osage Soho, entitled the Chow Yun Fat's Fitting Room series. The exhibition is curated by Patrick D. Flores, Professor at Department of Art Studies of the University of the Philippines and Adjunct Curator of the National Art Gallery of the Philippines. In Shiehˇ¦s previous forays, he took to the Chinese fine brush or gongbi gently, keenly and gracefully channeling its capacities not only to honor tradition and preserve its virtues. He also tried to renew its techniques to conjure bodies that make up cities and buildings, delicately formed, fusing seamlessly with their inhabitants. The tension between the fragility of the form and the full weight of social implication creates a situation of wonder, leading viewers to reflect on the process of making that is marked with lightness and wit and the engagement of the artist with a hectic, sometimes even brutal contemporary life.

Shieh's Chow Yun Fat's Fitting Room project reflects on how culture through appearance and adornment transforms in various media. The element of the famous Hong Kong actor Chow Yun Fat adds another dimension to this reflection because it introduces his own history of mutation from a local performer to a Hollywood star. This, too, had required him to shed old habits and take on new skin, learn a strange accent, and finally come to belong to a global world gathered by the cinema. In this exhibition, while Shieh departs from his exceptional use of the Chinese fine brush technique on silk and paper, though he retains its delicate manifestations. He demonstrates levels of mediation of clothing and consciousness through acrylic, crayon, graphite, and collage of prints. In this variety of media, the idea of transformation is further fleshed out in the process of dressing up and fashioned in the fitting rooms of society.