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The Paradox of Pleasure Group Exhibition | “愉悦悖论”群展


The Maverick Expo

April 30 - May 5, 2019

195 Chrystie St, New York, NY 10002

Reception: Apr. 30, 2019, 6 - 8 PM


Artists: Dongze Huo, Michael Krasowitz, Yimiao Liu, Zhangbolong Liu, Joslyn Moore, Renqian Yang

Curators: Liang Hai, Wenlu Bao
Featuring Contributions from: Gallery Sensei, bitforms gallery


[New York, NY] The Maverick Expo is pleased to present The Paradox of Pleasure, a group exhibition featuring six contemporary artists curated by Liang Hai and Wenlu Bao. It aims to draw the attention on a specific mental state, which is concealing complex negative emotions under pleasant appearance in the contemporary society among individuals, especially in urban life. The exhibition attempts to discover spontaneous attitudes when individuals place themselves in high-pressure situations, and questions the inter-relationship between individuals’ external and internal selves. The artists include Dongze Huo, Michael Krasowitz, Yimiao Liu, Zhangbolong Liu, Joslyn Moore, and Renqian Yang. Despite their diverse backgrounds, all the selected works focus on questioning the truth of pleasure.


The presented artworks are visually pleasing, with bright vivid colors and soft delightful forms. However, they express lost and insecure in multiple ways, such as depicting the sense of solitude, tracking the clues of disappearance, being immersed by helpless, or struggling for mental escape. The contrast of visual expression and spiritual connotation in this exhibition is an authentic reflection of people hiding negative emotions behind peaceful or joyful faces, either consciously or unconsciously.


As a deep-rooted thought in both Oriental culture and western culture, the stigma of defections exists among the society. People are shameful to reveal their weakness and negativeness, for the fear of being considered unfortunate and miserable. Most of the times, people’s e assume those who look perfect and sufficient for life are decent and can be respected. This phenomenon causes stresses or even mental problems when the external pressure reaches a high level, and a worst result could be depressive disorder or debilitating anxiety.


Through the selected artworks, by sharing each artist’s perspectives and experiences, the exhibition hopes to open a platform to question the state of pleasure, and to discuss the paradox of always being delightful.


Dongze Huo (b. 1985) draws on his own experience of acclimation to new environments. He interprets uncertainty and changes with his reflections on realistic living environment to graceful paintings. Huo’s works, such as Escape series, are influenced by the Chinese philosophy of allowing things to happen naturally so that to let his mediums to “take their own course.”


Michael Krasowitz (b. 1958)  depicts the complexity of human emotions through his fantastical and intricate compositions. He connects abstraction and amorphous shapes to his personal meditations from his experiences. Michael is interested in the idea of Synchronicity described by Carl Jung, which indicates happenings in life are meaningful, but cannot be predicted from cause and effect. He is seeking to tap into a state of consciousness to express the compound of the multiple dimensions of substances.


Yimiao Liu (b. 1993), as a female artist, intends to explore the relationship between women and the external  world by reflecting on the pervasive cultures of female oppression and the ways women are rising above.

Zhangbolong Liu (b. 1989) attempts to document objects that have already disappeared completely from view, or, rather, his subject matter is to capture the “existence of non-existent things.” Through missing objects in a museum showcase, leftover pinholes on isolated wallpaper and wrinkled bed sheets that have not yet been flattened out, the so-called “non-existent objects” are able to declare their existence after all.


Joslyn Moore (b. 1993)’s body of work involves processes of Automatism in the digital age, applying  the juxtaposition of natural phenomena in flora and fauna to express her objection to the metropolitan atmosphere  and her struggles between social identities. Moore’s conceptual narratives are formed with elements of storytelling, communication, and art historical influence.

Renqian Yang (b.1987) is interested in the concept of binaries. Her work addresses the unity and the contradiction of dichotomies: restriction and freedom; pessimism and optimism; complexity and simplicity; representation and abstraction; the man-made world and the natural world. Yang combines both traditional and nontraditional methods in her practices.

The Maverick Expo荣幸地宣布将举办展览《愉悦悖论 (The Paradox of Pleasure)》。此次群展由海良和包雯璐进行策展,选择了七位当代艺术家的代表性作品,聚焦现代人愉快的表面背后隐藏着复杂的负面情绪的精神状态。这种现象在当代社会,尤其是城市生活中更加明显。展览希望发掘人们处于压力之下时真实的内心状态,并对人们的外部自我和内部自我的相互关系提出问题。参展艺术家包括霍东泽,迈克尔·克拉索维奇,刘一妙,刘张铂泷,乔瑟琳·莫尔,杨人倩。尽管他们的背景和经历不同,但入选作品有着共同的主题,即关注和质疑所谓“愉快”的真实性。



通过选择的一系列艺术作品,和艺术家们所分享的视角和经历,The Paradox of Pleasure展览希望为人们创造一个反思自身精神状态的平台,并开始讨论在生活中时刻保持愉快状态的矛盾性。

霍东泽 (b. 1985) 来自西安,现居美国纽约,他勾勒出自己在适应新环境的种种经历与心境。他将不确定性和无常的变化,结合以自己对现实环境的反思,延展在绘画作品中。他的作品,恰如Escape系列,受到中国“道法自然”和“无为”的处世哲学影响,可以从中看出自然而连续的运动,敞开拥抱偶然性。

迈克尔·克拉索维奇 (b. 1958) 通过他充满想象画面和繁复的构图,描绘出人类感情的复杂性。他将抽象创作和无定形的绘画方式与自己对于生活经验的冥想联系起来。迈克尔对于卡尔·荣格描述的“共时性(Synchronicity)”有着极深的兴趣,这种理论认为看起来因果无关的事件之间存在这一种普适的主观链接。他正试图进入一种心理学层面的意识形态,以此来表达对人们多维度生存现状的认知。

刘一妙 (b. 1993)作为一名女性艺术家,致力于通过反思压抑女性的普遍文化和女性自主崛起的方式,来探索女性与外部世界的关系。

刘张铂泷 (b. 1989)尝试记录消失的事物,或“不存在事物的存在”。透过作品消失的博物馆展柜,针孔孤立的墙壁,皱褶尚未抚平的床单,被移除的“不存在事物”得以宣告自我的存在。拍摄的过程让刘张进一步思考个人感知与外界变化的关系。

乔瑟琳·莫尔 (b. 1993)的作品试图讨论数字时代的自动化进程,通过自然界中动植物形象的错位拼贴,来表现她对都市生活分为的一种反抗,以及自身多重社会身份之间的挣扎。摩尔的创作概念主要由叙事、沟通和艺术史的影响组成。

杨人倩 (b.1987)对事物的二元对立非常感兴趣。她的作品关注对立属性的矛盾和统一,如束缚与自由,悲观与乐观,复杂与简单,具象与抽象,人造与自然。她一直积极地运用传统技法和实验材料进行跨界创作,挑战固有规则和传统。


Philadelphia, PA, USA

© 2019 by Wenlu Bao

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