“The Task of Alchemy”, Pocono Zhao Yu’s solo exhibition at Arch Gallery, presents a subtle sense of time traveling. As the title of the exhibition alludes to, it is as if the smelting and mysterious deeds of some spiritual objects. Within the whisper that fluttering outside of time, this enormous task is under the invisible dome of time.
“Please, Do Mind The Gap.” is the first solo exhibition in China by Swiss artist June Fischer. This exhibition encompasses multidimensional creations in photography, sculpture, installation, and literature. Fischer’s artworks are interdisciplinary, using multiple materials and mediums. While materiality has boundaries, the ways in which things connect have no limitations. Symbols that hover above the surface are awakened as separate entities. The recombination of different materials and elements generates entirely new contexts, allowing us to find fresh interpretations beyond conventional understanding.
In the first part of the exhibition, June uses automatic writing to create the script “Stuzzicadenti,” combining words written unconsciously. Stripped of its context or anticipated possibilities, this manuscript reflects the complex fusion of June’s memories, emotions, and associations. Her artworks extract words from it, attempting to present them in a tangible form.
“How do you preserve a video or performance? What forms of expression can represent a video? How can you present it in a non-traditional way? And how can you integrate it into your work? Where do the boundaries between sculpture, painting, and video art lie?” These are questions June constantly asks herself, inspiring her to experiment and transcend these boundaries.
The modular presentation of ceramic pieces in the exhibition stems from June’s fictional narrative, where patterns from screen printing and sculptures intertwine. Chaotic imagery blends with the interaction and diffusion among different materials and textures. Frames typically used to restrict and contain images are deconstructed, breaking the space between two surfaces and extending the boundaries.
In the second part of the exhibition, the artist reconnects with her childhood dream of becoming a marine biologist and explores detailed studies of bare branches. Based on her selection of different species, June showcases the captivating optical features of caterpillars, which often emit toxic signals to deter predators. She imparts lifelike characteristics onto lifeless, rigid ceramic organisms.
Caterpillars serve as the theme in the new works, symbolizing transient embodiments and emphasizing the process of transformation, reminding us of unchangeable destinies. The artist reflects on human desires, the perception of individual beauty, and the futile attempts to preserve moments that are fleeting.
Everything we are trained to comprehend can be explained. However, at this very moment, all interpretations seem futile and foolish. The meanings, boundaries, spaces, and time of chaotic materials, images, and videos are being shattered and recombined. Perhaps we do not need everything to have attached meanings or a complete plan, nor do we require things to be in their correct positions. Right now, we have our own rules, our own grammar, and our own spirit.
Written by Xie Yu and Sean Tien
June Fischer was born in August 1995 in Zurich, Switzerland. This is also where she currently lives and works as an independent artist. While in recent years Fischer has developed a strong interest in refining her technical skills in ceramic craftsmanship, her artistic practice is highly multidisciplinary and encompasses media such as photography, sculpture, installation as well as writing and audiovi- sual work. As such, she seeks to transcend and challenge the boundaries between fixed categories whilst experimenting with the interplay between different forms of presentation and materials.
Fischer’s versatile approach of expression is highly reflected in her works and evokes the state of dissociation. We all desperately yearn to hold on to something, don’t we? Solid lines between distinct media and context are deliberately blurred by a playful overlay.