Night Mirrors • Mariano Ching in collaboration with Yasmin Sison

Sep 8 to Sep 24, 2021 • Video Room

Night Mirrors is a collaborative exhibition by Mariano Ching and Yasmin Sison-Ching.

Based on dystopian imaginations, Mariano Ching’s highly textured depiction of deformed living organisms is visually arresting and psychologically haunting. The motifs in the paintings are taken from his previous works from the early 2000s, which appear more imminent in the present day confronted by the acceleration of environmental degradation fueled by human invasions.

In parallel to Mariano’s dark satirical images, the brightly colored paintings of Yasmin Sison-Ching have a bearing on her continued search for release from the system of signs socially embedded, through experimentation with the visual elements — textures of layered colors, speeds of brushstrokes, rhythms of lines, and interactions of shapes.

The exhibition captures the dynamism created by the tension between Mariano’s figuration, which draws the viewers into the narratives inside the painting, and Yasmin’s abstractions that constantly bounces back our attention to the painting’s surface and materiality, reminding us that a canvas is covered with pigments. Through the playful and intuitive explorations of the visual associations, the exhibition places the two solitary worlds side-by-side. The works are intimately attached and exhibited in pairs, eliminating the space that divides. The ‘self-sufficient’ categorizations are destabilized.

The act of exhibiting is traditionally associated with separation and extraction from an original context, transforming it into an object of discourse manipulated by underlying ideologies. As if to critique such violence, the exhibition retains the interactions and relationships among the works forged over time in the space that the artists have shared. The reciprocity and interdependence posited by the two artists turn the exhibition into an open, sharable space that invites the viewer’s impulse to breathe through the moments of alignment where new meanings are engendered. (Mayumi Hirano)