Ryan Gander: Soft Modernism

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Visually simple yet strangely alluring, works created by Ryan Gander displayed at his solo exhibition Soft Modernism focus on the relationship between objects. Perhaps the curious nature of humans to narcissistically articulate an affiliation is what attracts the audience, as each of the neo-conceptual pieces has the potential to allude to a personally relevant story from their life—of the past, present and future. That is, the sculptures, paintings and interactive installations showcased are simplified in form to a point where anyone is allowed with plenty of room for open interpretation and storytelling—and, at the same time, a chance to understand the veiled meanings which the artist mischievously induced. Such self-conscious nature is the reference with which the title of the exhibition is understood: for the artist, post-modern art is nothing but “frivolous ego-centric  nonsense,” that is, contrary to the viewpoint of many art historians who regard conceptual art as post-modern, and hence refers to his collection as "soft modernism." From the contemporary "selfie culture" discussed in the basement installation to pieces that suggestively arouse childhood sensibilities, Gander's works engage viewers in the conceptual exploration of ambiguous relationships we naturally build upon interaction.

By: Chuljunsung

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