Indepth Arts News: |
1999-07-25 until 1999-10-17
Museum of Photographic Arts
San Diego, CA,
USA United States of America
On Sunday, July 25, 1999, the Museum of Photographic Arts will present work by local
artist Han Nyguyen: in the museum's temporary home at the downtown facility of the
Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego. (MoPA exhibitions and programs are being
presented at MCA Downtown through Spring 2000 while the museum expands its
Balboa Park facility.) Han Nyguyen: In Studio is organized by MoPA Curator Diana
Gaston in collaboration with the artist.
Born in Vietnam, Nguyen immigrated to the United States in
1975 and settled in San Diego. Largely self-taught, he
mastered the complexities of studio work and printing through a few classes at City College and
Grossmont College. His work takes place primarily in the controlled space of the studio, where the
unlikely subjects of rocks, firewood and common plants serve as the starting point for his
transcendent images, said Gaston. Most recently Nguyen has expanded his imagery to include his
own body. Using a pinhole camera and long exposures, he creates self-portraits through gestures,
utilizing his hands, feet, legs and torso as expressive signs of physical identity.
While the Gesture series reveals the artist's sensuous exploration of
self and body, many of his images are playful, even whimsical, Gaston
commented. One recent series, entitled Interiors finds Nguyen creating
small rooms for his own miniature clay structures, some of them
imitating the massive forms of Brancusi, others creating a simple domestic space complete with
tiny bowls, oversized utensils and stools. He explores cultural cliches and the absurd fabrications
of B-movies as readily as he takes on the lingering memory of ancestors and their presence in the
landscape, explains Gaston. His is an intensely private photographic world - and one vie feel
privileged to share with our San Diego audience.
Han Nguyen In Studio assembles more than fifty prints from
all phases of the artist's richly varied production. The
exhibition remains on display through October 17, 1999.