The Art of Dress
Espace Louis Vuitton, Singapore
June - Oct 2012
Movana Chen and Man Fung Yi
The "Art of Dress" amins to explore the notion of the everyday made universal through art. It is an exhibition that explores the essence of dress as an abstract concept.
The "Art of Dress" is not concerned with fashion or glamour or the cut, color, drape, fit, function or feel of any particular garments or any particular community or style. The "Art of Dress" examines the work of two Hong Kong Chinese artists who use the idea of clothing as a meraphor for the body of humanity and the fact that we are all individually, gloriously different. We travel to different countries in order to experience for ourselves the differences between cultures. This exhibition celerates those things that make us uniquely different and those bind us together.
For both of the artists in this exhibition, their work is metaphor for the ways in which the inevitable cycle of life can be transmuted into art. We are all the sum of our every experience with every person, place and thing that we encounter, either in the real world of our physical existence, or the no less real virtual world that we experience through our use of intellect and emotion. In their work these artists explore those experiences that now only exist in memory. For most of us time is linear and all things, including our allotted span of life, begin and take their natural course until hey reach their inevitable end. But Einstein proved that time is relative and later came to believe that the separation between past, present, and future is only an illusion, albeit a very convincing one. Art also offers us a way to experiece the past, present and future as a single undivided existence.
her knitted works Hong Kong artist Movana Chen creates fabrics that may be fashioned into forms, but the thing that gives her works resonance is the fact are knitted out of the pages of books and magazines that were given to her by friends and strangers. Book burnings are the preserve of hateful autocratic regimes and are traumatic beacause they represent a deliberate attemp to destroy a living culture, but When Movana shreds a book, it is ti remake it in such a way that the lives of the owner, author, artist, and every other person who may have read the same work are intermingled into something shared. Movana only accepts gifts of books if they had particular siignificance to the person that gave it to her. When it is reborn as art, somthing of that significance endures even though the original words and pictures are now totally unintellgible.
Exhibition Curator: Jonathan Thomson