Carrie Secrist Gallery is pleased to present Derek Chan: All Our Relations, opening Saturday, December 10, 2011 from 5 – 8 PM. All Our Relations, Chan’s first solo exhibition with the gallery, comprises paintings, drawings, and installation to contemplate cultural myth and sacred writings.
Driven by the significant role symbols play in our everyday lives, Chan’s new body of work is born from an exploration of the hieroglyphs and petroglyphs of indigenous cultures. Central to this exhibition is the theme of "The Weaver", inspired by Native American myth. These works are Chan's interpretation of the exoteric teachings of indigenous cultures, applied to personal and collective lived experience. The imagery in this exhibition pulls from a series of created symbols, found universally across cultures in the East and the West and in the lexicon of abstract painting.
Chan's current work is reflective of the post-minimalist tradition of the 70's, in the embrace of the hand, color and affect. Of further interest to Chan is continual transformation through ritual and repetition. The artist intends that the images contained in his work act as a bridge between spiritual thought and creative action.
Derek Chan received his MFA from the University of Illinois-Chicago in 2007. Past solo exhibitions include A Way of Life, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, and Thirty and Eight, Golden Age, Chicago. Recent collaborations include Cosmic Workshop, part of The Happiness Project, Chicago and Counting Time (with Theaster Gates) at the 2010 Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.
In the Project Room, the gallery will present Living Book (2011) created by Plural and The Center for Book Technology. Influenced by Walter Benjamin’s The Work of Art in the Age of Its Technological Reproducibility, this project examines the functional distinction between author (writer) and public (reader). Living Book transforms the gallery space into an automated book production facility. Using custom-software, viewers in the space are captured in-real-time (every 60 seconds) from an overhead camera and projected onto the wall. Each capture is then printed onto single pages of a book in production. In addition, a keyboard allows viewers to author their own page(s), creating a spontaneous performance environment where a database of individual choices becomes a collective narrative.
The Living Book Production Facility will be open 5 hours a day, printing a single page every 60 seconds, resulting in a 300-page book at the end of each business day. Each week will become a collection of 5 books. Living Book (2011) will become a collection of 25 books.