Magazine article Sculpture

Tokyo

Magazine article Sculpture

Tokyo

Article excerpt

If you have patience with the lofty, yet somehow naïve, intentions of Taiwanese artist Lee Mingwei, you'll find that somehow he gets to the truth of contemporary society. His thoughtful, hypnotic, yet quiet voice in his videos explains the ideas behind each of his participatory projects. His roots in Taiwan go deep: a family photo album, beginning with his great-grandfather and his grandparents (who attended university in Japan), was displayed in the show. In California, he studied with Suzanne Lacy. His work freely crosses traditional boundaries of gender. Since receiving his MFA in sculpture from Yale University in 1997, he's been mainly based in New York. His works have been exhibited across the world since 2005.

In The Mending Project (2009/ 2014), spools of brightly colored threads spread over a wall. Partici - pants brought damaged clothing and fabric items, which Lee mended, the thread not cut but attached to the wall-mounted spools in order to create a crisscross web of lines. Lee says that the image was suggested by 9/11 and became a celebration of life and survival. A museum staffmember mended the clothes when Lee was not in attendance.

Through Masters' Eyes (2004) exemplifies the Chinese tradition of copying masterpieces. In succession, contemporary artists of different ethnicities copied previous copies of a work by Shitao, a master painter of the early Qing Dynasty. …

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