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is love a tender thing? 2018 

is love a tender thing? at the University Art Gallery at UCI 

is love a tender thing? negotiates the boundaries within relationships: the misunderstandings between people through gestures of sincerity, the gravity between bodies through weight and tension amongst the sculptural objects and their influence of navigation through the viewing space. A relationship’s residual impressions often having consequences that are guided by micro-disconnections and are often forgotten and then accumulated. The works present are fueled by images of archived past collaborations. The impetus to enact this gesture was to turn a critical lens to explore what we hope to gain through connecting with others. Within the structures of community, there are always inherent disconnections that are left unsaid. How can we effectively connect with others without dissolving ourselves and how could we possibly reorganize to make a space for another way of thinking about connection within community?

The sculptural objects and video works began by staging a re-membering of past collaborative projects between artists and friends who I deeply care for. The re-membered story was derived and directed from isolated vignettes of collaborative works that utilized unactivated architectural spaces for intuitive group responses to production and display. I constructed a video set that compressed these collaborations into one work, in space that physically replicated the University Art Gallery that the work would, and could be situated in. The fictionalizing act begins in the mediated retelling of the collaborative experiences. The mediation is the fictionalized act, as it occupies the space of what absent, describing an new experience formed through all that it excludes: the original collaborations, myself physically as collaborator, the origin and the original site.

The retelling is the vehicle for expressing a subjective truth, where I am consciously aware that this is a projection of the longing for connectivity and a desire to reoccupy a space of belonging. The works in the exhibition are further mediations from the original story; its form deviated from its origin. Expanding into a new world built on the foundation of what is vacant, to become a new relationship of its own.

solo exhibition | photo documentation by Yubo Dong ofstudio photography