Angel Mask by Wing Shya

masked violence

I completely didn’t know this was a separate work from Azhanti High Lightning. The two are completely unrelated, but share the same publicity poster.

So this was what I wrote in the guest book:

The works are intriguing, poignant and suitably lit. Your own obsession of violence has become art! Has that violence been influenced by Wushu (Chinese Martial Art)? Or Kill Bill cinematic acts of screen violence?

The works seem to be an experiment of violence as aesthetics, pushing blood and gore.

I can imagine your next work will focus on purer violence, or a kind of performance art. I once heard a story of a Kazakhstan artist slicing the throat of a lamb in front of a live audience in an art gallery, much like the ritual sacrifice of the lamb, but heralding as art.

The snapshot aesthetics of the photographs are beautifully arranged, resembling stills extracted from films dealing with memory and loss, and hence the segmentation and fragmentation, seen in the image of the thin, frail looking nude woman, the passing airplanes, a car crashing into a wall and the sword wielding ‘butcher’. The responsibility of constructing a narrative is thus passed over to the viewer.

But there is something in that violence, a longing for catharsis, that is incredibly penetrating, dangerously close to ‘religious fervour’ and thus possibly alluring. The snap shots, masked this. A singular ‘moment’ will perhaps expose this in more specific and interesting ways.

3.0 of 10 stars 

NAFA Gallery (nearer to The Coffee Connoisseur)

2 June – 5 July 2007

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