A very good evening to all of us
Eye-Lusion has found its adequate environment:
on the different levels, in the hidden niches and in the many angular perspectives of this beautiful Gallery.
The playfulness with which we let wander our eyes and which is part of the deceptive eye-lusion is definitely an inherent part of the paintings and photos we are looking at tonight.
Chin Kong Yee for example is telling us that reality is really and exclusively in the eye of the beholder. He uses the flexibility and elasticity of our irises and retinas when shaping the outside world into yet another eye-ball with the subjective deficiency of konvex farsightedness.
As far as his eye can see he forces everything holistically into something whole, with all the twists and bends of objects after they have been squeezed into his painted constellations; and his view is personal, he is part of this, and to make sure that we know he is there he leaves us a trace, not to say a scent, (because we are talking about his shoes: Puma, 40 Ringgit, by the way), or he throws his whole body into the lower borderline as in the picture on the way upstairs.
If the romantic concept consisted in ‘I seek in what I see’, Kong Yee is expressively ‘showing what he has found’, which comes across in an amiable naiveté of grotesquely disproportionate figures and objects and interestingly enough he also seems to use symmetry, which, however, has a different function from Volker’s use of symmetry, in that he simply adds a second look to the same scene without any mirror or axis in the painting itself.
For me it is the ‘global view’ – and you can take that literally – which functions as a jumping ball to Volker Hamann’s artistic perceptions and it is also the common use of symmetries, even if for different purposes.
Simply think of ‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’, think of this kaleidoscopic eyes, this look at reality through wondrous glasses and geometric arrangements, when you approach Volker’s photographs.
With our eyes narrowed to slits, with our eye-balls and pupils compressed, we are looking at deeper levels, at metaphorical meanings: plastic tubes become natural shells or living cells, they become mandalas and our reflections follow the symmetries which render an epic experience of repetition.
One cell looks real, two same cells tell us a story, three and four same cells are a series and if ordered in a symmetrical way they become parallel worlds, they question our perception of reality.
If plastic tubes become biological cells, landscapes become artificial patterns when cloned into mirror images.
I also like the funnel attraction of Volker’s symmetries, they lead us towards something, which is lying beyond, beyond super blue and steely skies or behind dim and foggy backgrounds, they take us on a search, without giving us any answers.
Ten years separate these two artists in their life history, and it seems that Kong Yee’s holistic distortions and Volker’s multiple cuts into reality are complementary attempts to find an order in what we see.
Wei-Ling had tried to convince me more than a year ago that we should bring together what belongs together, and she meant these two artists who had coincidentally run into each other, had organized a first exhibition of their works in Stuttgart and now are now having their second exhibition here in KL. And I have finally understood that Wei-Ling is right when she so aptly subsumes their works under the title of Eye-Lusions.
Looking at the personal cooperation and networking between these two artists I must say that the Goethe-Institut can only wish for more such intercultural exchanges, even if it means that we are loosing one of our major tasks which is to establish just such exchanges ourselves.
We are therefore gladly stepping back as soon as we have officially opened this exhibition with the last word of this sentence! Thank you!