Ed Pien: Strangers in a Strange Land
January 23 – February 28, 2015
Opening Friday January 23rd from 5pm to 7:30pm
Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain is proud to present new drawings by Ed Pien in parallel with the National Gallery of Canada’s presentation of his masterwork Ad Infinitum in the exhibition “Shine a Light”.
Relinquishing the comforts and habits of the known, his imagery and his processes reveal the risks and rewards of traversing the territory of the unknown. Rather than adopt an illustrative approach, Pien works spontaneously. No preconceived image is held; each line begets the next, necessitating a leap of faith on the part of the artist. The images generated through this organic process capture the immediacy of his linear gestures and the fluidity of his brushwork in a highly expressive visual field. Pien’s imagery conjures a fantastic and disturbing universe. His all-over ink and gouache compositions are brimming with mutant monsters, hybrid creatures and celestial beings — angelic and demonic — summoned from his subconscious. Blue giants, greenhaired witches, menacing night-walkers, shamanistic puppet-players, winged figures with bulging eyeballs, two-headed teddy bears and other similarly tragic Halloween-types inhabit these interior worlds. In each of the artist’s vignettes, an event instigated by one of the antagonists unfolds before the viewer, the activities often carrying on beyond the edges of the paper. Allusions to various forms of social transgression and power imbalances persist, accentuating the vulnerability of the body and the psyche. Playful, provocative, sensual and sinister, Pien’s drawings elicit and mirror the anxieties, fears and desires that issue from the depths of our being.
Text: Carolyn Bell Farrell
More info: www.pfoac.com