PLATFORM CHINA CONTEMPORARY ART INSTITUTE
SONG YUANYUAN - DOWNSTAGE UPSTAGE (solo)
EXHIBITION SYNOPSISAbout Song Yuanyuan - Downstage Upstage
Song Yuanyuan’s new solo show, entitled “Downstage, Upstaged,” presented by Platform China, will be on exhibit from December 17th, 2016 to February 26th, 2017. His new pieces build on the moody temperament established in his “Examining Objects” series of absurdly disfigured forms laughing in the dark.
Song has recently begun to incorporate realism in his paintings, no longer avoiding emotion and narrative but identifying it, unusually, in the "minor characters" of the scenes we inhabit.
Minor characters are more likely seen downstage, away from the audience. They're not usually the main focal point, but Song brings them upstage, so we can get a better look. Those characters are a secondary element on the frame; yet they play a crucial role in making the piece whole. They help give the story context and establish the stakes of the action. Similarly, Song anthropomorphizes previously overlooked objects, instilling in them personality and spirit. A human face appears in an apple, a shoe serves as a house, and the golden statue…
Song looks to fairy tales – crammed with bowls of porridge, ruby slippers, and magical beans – for a language through which to understand these insignificant objects. And yet a scene filled with only minor characters eventually collapses back into context for something else. Like photos of empty stages, the works ultimately hand the power of interpretation and imagination to the viewer to complete the narrative.
Over the next two months, the exhibition will be periodically updated, with the pieces recombined and reorganized to suggest different storylines. In addition to paintings, Song’s sketches and his artist notes play minor roles in the exhibition, creating the possibility for open interpretation while serving as a loose script with which to read the artist’s work.
(Series: works with no series), 2016
ARTIST: Song Yuanyuan