Musings of an Origin
Friday, October 21, 2016 – Friday, November 4, 2016
In Musings of an Origin, I work within a hybrid genre of history painting, interpreting moments that have shaped racial and cultural conflict in America. Embracing Michel Foucault’s concept of heterotopias as sites that mirror, distort, and invert other spaces, my painted gestures reside in inverted, geometric spaces reminiscent of the void in eastern landscape painting, and bear the uniform of regional textile designs. Embedded within the process of the work are methods, philosophies and materials merging western and eastern painting.
For centuries, the worldwide textile trade has been a complicated narrative of migration, hierarchy and power. The trade assigned the various Easts with exotic mystery, and supplanted it significantly as the other. The nonverbal aesthetics of textiles transcends language barriers, yielding notable capacity to be culturally absorbed. The painted gestures and textiles envelope, penetrate, and permeate among echoes of eastern water motifs and fluids; signifying the separation of nations, and dissolving of the painted bodies. The movements become phantoms to the chords of colonialism and conflict, creating a labyrinth of violence, migration and coupling. The paint and space coalesce, creating an entanglement of our eternally diasporic, world.
Lien Truong’s paintings examine social, cultural, and political history, exploring the influences that bind the formation of contemporary identity and belief systems. Truong has exhibited in venues including the National Portrait Gallery, Washington DC; Art Hong Kong; Galerie Quynh, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; Southern Exposure, San Francisco; and the Oakland Museum of California. Her work has received publication and reviews in New American Paintings, ARTit Japan and the San Francisco Chronicle. She is an Assistant Professor of Art at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.