In This Place
"In This Place" was a solo exhibition held in Guangzhou, China after a two month artist residency at Lido Art Center. The exhibition featured work created during a seven-month trip to Europe and Asia but mainly focused on my time in Nanting - a small artist village in Guangzhou. This body of work compiled of sketches, video and installation, satirized my lack of understanding of my new environment.
All photos by José Luis Vílchez
Observations of Nanting Vol. 1 was a collaboration with Jeremy Freedberg. Special thanks to the rest of the Lido crew for patiently modeling for us.
Frequently being an outsider in a new language and culture, I tend to look for visual clues to fill in the blanks. Naturally drawn to found objects, much of my work is inspired by mundane everyday items that suddenly become more fascinating in a new context. During my time in Nanting, I was drawn to the incredible textures and colors that make up the town. The gridded walls and neon plastics create a unique canvas for the creative culture there. With zero understanding of the Chinese language, and little knowledge of the culture in Nanting, I absorbed the objects of the village as evidence. Piles of rubble and old abandoned artworks became landmarks for navigating through the space.
For the exhibition, we wanted the space to feel unfinished - like a large sketchbook of objects, art and words I had collected during my time in Nanting. We also decided that the show should have a lose, inviting atmosphere so that the art and the town, could be as closely integrated as possible.