Christine Wu’s exhibition “Sleepless” coming to Thinkspace Gallery’s Main Room

Christine Wu Sleepless

Thinkspace is pleased to present Sleepless, the gallery’s first major solo exhibition of new works by New York City-based painter Christine Wu. A figurative oil painter who explores the expressive and emotive possibilities of the body, Wu delves into the vulnerability of self and the haunted nature of human consciousness. Her evocative and sensual depictions explore themes such as nostalgia and metaphysical becoming, expressing ephemeral states through physical manifestations of subjectivity. Wu incorporates abstract gestures into her works, often dissolving edges and contours to conflate environments and disrupt the representation of bodies, splintering and splitting the cohesion of an illusory whole in favor of a more experientially realistic incoherence. These moments of abstraction, however, are always in service of form and figure. Wu is fascinated by the cyclical momentum of growth and decay, and by the literal and metaphoric complicity of life and death. Her paintings capture this ambivalence, revealing the ghostly remnants of a divided subject through symbolic figurative instability, redoubling and flux.

Wu is interested in memory as a subjective construct; a mutable and fractured consciousness that is defined by sensorial experience and recall. Stylistically, she expresses this intangible feeling of disjointedness through multiple vantage points, or moments, captured in a single temporal frame, not unlike double-exposure photography. This unhinging of linear time captures the conflict of divisive psychological states. As the title of the exhibition suggests, Sleepless invokes the disturbances of night, both real and imagined, and the suspended unrest or “world-weariness,” in the artist’s own words, that arrests the subject’s release into sleep. As with previous works, Wu’s new paintings are sensual corporeal excavations of a vulnerable and imperfect self, grappling with the interminable process of self-realization.

Known for her subtle tonal palettes, and exquisitely precise line work, Wu’s new works are darker and more muted than her previous. This aesthetic shift is Intended to capture a feeling of isolation and emotional strain, in keeping with the exhibition’s theme of nocturnal restlessness. Her subjects are women created from a woman’s perspective; conflicted, complex, sensual, wounded and ambivalent, rather than reductively fetishized. Wu is in search of raw emotional experience rather than caricature, expressed through the vicissitudes of the physical body. Formally, the new works explore texture and tactility in new ways, inciting a physical reaction and desire to touch, a desire offset by its implicit prohibition.

In Sleepless, Wu continues to stage these tensions between the intimate and private, the public and exposed. There is a quiet and understated, though undeniable, intensity to the glimpses of interior life the artist selectively reveals. Through her unique take on figurative expressionism, Wu’s visceral paintings remind us of the fragility, and resilience, of the human psyche, and of the unavoidable erosion and deterioration of all external and impermanent things. Wu’s splintered bodies in breach seem to suggest that the individual’s personal growth is inextricably bound to a series of imposed and elective deaths; a constant process of undoing and becoming, remembering and forgetting.

Christine WuSleepless
January 23 – February 20, 2016
Opening Saturday, January 23, 6-9pm

Christine Wu Sleepless Work In Progress Detail Shot

Detail shot of a work in progress from “Sleepless” 

Linnea Strid’s “Love Me When I’m Gone” exhibition coming to Thinkspace Gallery’s Project Room

Linnea Strid Love Me When I'm Gone

Concurrently on view in the Thinkspace project room is Love Me When I’m Gone, featuring new works by Swedish painter Linnea Strid. Known for her emotive, hyperrealistic paintings, Strid captures minute details with surreal precision, creating a world that feels uncannily amplified.

In this new series of works, Strid continues to explore imagery with water. Expert at capturing its reflective movement and depth, her paintings are filled with refracted light and distortions. Her subjects are presented in varying states of submersion and vulnerability, as her watery portraits take on a meditative dimension. Suspended somewhere between an unsettling and eerie calm and a foreboding anticipation, Strid arrests time.

In this series, Strid celebrates, and sensitively portrays, the artist’s struggle with anonymity, under-recognition and self-exposure, and the passion that nullifies the rational avoidance of this price, in a tribute to friends and artist peers. Recognizing that the work of many artists evades validation and economic success in their lifetime, the exhibition title expresses the delayed validation and expected sacrifice that comes with dedicating one’s life to art.

Linnea Strid Love Me When I'm Gone

Work in progress from Linnea Strid’s exhibition “Love Me When I’m Gone” 

Thinkspace Gallery’s 2016 Program

Thank you all for an amazing 2015! On behalf of all of us at Thinkspace Gallery we would like to wish you and your family a happy and healthy new year. We look forward to presenting you with another year of trail blazing exhibitions in 2016.

2016 Thinkspace Calendar

January 23rd – Feb. 20th
Christine Wu ‘Sleepless’
+ Linnea Strid ‘Love Me When I’m Gone’

Jan. 27th – Jan. 31st
LA Art Show ‘Littletopia’

Feb. 7th – Feb. 14th
‘The 3rd Annual POW! WOW! Exploring The New Contemporary Movement’
POW! WOW! Hawai’I at the Honolulu Museum Art School

February 27th – March 19th
‘Duo’ group show with Telmo Miel, Nevercrew, Snik, Jana & JS, The Yok & Sheryo, and Cyrcle
+ Rodrigo Luff ‘Nemeta’

March 3rd – March 6th
SCOPE New York
*Brian M. Viveros solo + small group

April 2nd – April 23rd
Amy Sol
+ Kikyz1313 ‘The Progeny of Chaos’

April 30th – May 21st
Kwon Kyung-yup
+ Matthew Grabelsky

May 28th – June 18th
+ James Bullough

Long Beach Museum of Art / POW! WOW! Long Beach

June 25th – July 16th
Jeremy Fish & Jim Houser
+ Troy Lovegates

July 23rd – August 13th
Adam Caldwell
+ Cinta Vidal

August 13th – October 30th
Curated show at the Lancaster Museum of Art and History (MOAH)

August 20th – Sept. 10th
Kevin Peterson
+ Amanda ‘Mando’ Marie

September 3rd
‘LAX / ORD’– curated show at Vertical Gallery (Chicago, IL)

September 17th – Oct. 8th
Alllison Sommers
+ Ozabu

Oct. 15th – Nov. 5th
Sandra Chevrier
+ Sean Mahan

Nov. 5th – January 6th
The Brand Library and Arts Center (Glendale, CA)

Nov. 12th – Dec. 3rd
Audrey Kawasaki
+ Stella Im Hultberg

SCOPE Miami Beach
*Solo shows from David Cooley, Cinta Vidal and Alex Yanes

Dec. 10th – Dec. 31st
Fuco Ueda
+ Ken Flewellyn