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Lily Wong + Ian Faden: Lunations

July 15 – August 14, 2021


Harper's Chelsea
534 W 22nd St
New York, NY 10011

Lily Wong + Ian Faden: Lunations

Lily Wong + Ian Faden: Lunations

Harper’s is pleased to present Lunations, an exhibition of new paintings and works on paper by Lily Wong and Ian Faden. Harper’s Chelsea 534 is open to the public from 10am to 6pm Tuesday through Sunday.

The conversation between Wong and Faden is one among natural complements and counterparts. While the two artists each have their own idiosyncratic themes and styles, both make allusions to time and space outside of the ticking clock of late-stage capitalism and the heteronormative gaze. Here, time slows down and holds space for collective grief; it rewinds and interrogates the circumstances that brought us here, and questions where exactly we all think we are going so fast. 

Wong’s palette is as mercurial as it is dreamy, inspired by the vivid and poetic images of Wong Kar-wai. The tones work in concert to lure the viewer into the works, in turn challenging perceptions of scale and the passage of time. Motifs such as the dripping veil repeat throughout her paintings alongside mysterious figures, hinting at elusive and uncanny narratives. Wong’s chimerical compositions reference Yoshitoshi’s print series, 100 Aspects of the Moon, which features lunar mythologies such as the East Asian folklore of the Jade Rabbit, who is said to be the companion of the moon Goddess Chang’e. Reinterpreting this ancient myth, Wong’s goddess fragments her perceived monolithic identity and questions the notions of belonging and self.

Charged with multi-dimensional movement, Faden’s work plays in a field of disembodiment, duplicity, and unrelenting exuberance in the face of threats from both visible and invisible death machines. Images of queer joy in Faden’s expansive desert are as much a comment on the parallels between the COVID pandemic and the AIDS epidemic as they are a defiant testimony of the waxing and waning realities of vulnerable communities. Referencing the title of Randy Shilts’s 1987 book, And the Band Played on: Politics, People, and the AIDS Epidemic, Faden’s figures also continue on, seemingly ill-fated again in the midst of unchanging circumstances.  

Lunations leaves the viewer with a sense of interconnectedness that might feel a bit alarming or new—like surviving a bizarre, not-so-natural disaster, then abruptly returning to so-called normalcy.

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Lily Wong
Reach Out
2021
Acrylic on paper
26 x 40 in
Framed: 29 x 43 in

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Lily Wong
A Passing Traveler
2021
Acrylic on paper
62 x 48 in
Framed: 65 x 51 in

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Lily Wong
Thoughts of Home
2021
Acrylic on paper
30 x 45 in
Framed: 33 x 47.5 in

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Ian Faden
Heaven Knows
2021
Oil on canvas
48 x 36 in

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Ian Faden
And the Band Played On
2021
Oil on canvas
35 x 39 in

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Ian Faden
I Feel Love
2021
Oil on canvas
40 x 36 in

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Ian Faden
And On And On
2021
Oil on canvas
20 x 18 in

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Ian Faden
Last Dance
2021
Oil on canvas
19 x 21 in

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Ian Faden
And On And On (cntd)
2021
Oil on canvas
20 x 18 in

Inquire

Lily Wong
Reach Out
2021
Acrylic on paper
26 x 40 in
Framed: 29 x 43 in

Lily Wong
A Passing Traveler
2021
Acrylic on paper
62 x 48 in
Framed: 65 x 51 in

Lily Wong
Thoughts of Home
2021
Acrylic on paper
30 x 45 in
Framed: 33 x 47.5 in

Ian Faden
Heaven Knows
2021
Oil on canvas
48 x 36 in

Ian Faden
And the Band Played On
2021
Oil on canvas
35 x 39 in

Ian Faden
I Feel Love
2021
Oil on canvas
40 x 36 in

Ian Faden
And On And On
2021
Oil on canvas
20 x 18 in

Ian Faden
Last Dance
2021
Oil on canvas
19 x 21 in

Ian Faden
And On And On (cntd)
2021
Oil on canvas
20 x 18 in

Press

REVIEW
TheGuide.art
 

 

Two together can create a world. Lunations, a dual exhibition between Lily Wong and Ian Faden, at Harper’s Chelsea, would seem to be a prime example. In new works on paper, the pair dabble in a form of private ritualism or occultism—in Wong’s case a haunting East Asian-inflected spiritualism; in Faden’s a distinctly queer and music-based Bacchanalia—to carve out an uncanny world from the contours of our own.


 

 


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Lily Wong (b. 1989, Seattle, WA) earned a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design in 2011, and an MFA from CUNY Hunter College in 2020. Most recently, her work has been exhibited at Harper’s, New York, NY (2021 and 2020); Kapp Kapp, Philadelphia, PA (2021) and New York, NY (2020); Fredericks & Freiser, New York, NY (2021); Ramp Gallery, London, UK (2020); The Wunderwall, Antwerp, BE (2020); HVW8 Gallery, Berlin DE (2018); and Underdonk, Brooklyn, NY (2018). Wong lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

Ian Faden (b. 1988, Boston, MA) earned a BFA from Pratt Institute in 2011, and was an artist-in-residence at the Vermont Studio Center in 2015. His work has been exhibited at Harper’s, New York, NY (2021); 17 Essex, New York, NY (2020); Super Dutchess, New York, NY (2020); and Danese/Corey, New York, NY (2019). Faden lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.