Aubin Kwon and
by Kiel Torres
When beginning with the wrong button, precision is proximate. There is charm to the hold’s asymmetry, a wonky endearment in the false start. The aloof misstep that arises from haste or heedlessness is tended to with concentration. Matching two sides of a crooked garment takes gentle attention. To restore alignment, start at the top. Undo to redo. We see this process mirrored in love. Whether within friendships or familial relations, care fastens what comes undone. With works by Aubin Kwon and Christian Vistan, Flat Feelings tenderly connects proximities to kin. In dialogue with a previous installation of paintings and placemats at Yum Yum Chicken in Airdrie, Alberta, Flat Feelings explores the complex economy of inheritance—whether of objects, property, or aspirations—and the emotional and social worlds that make up a family home.
Taking place in a converted bedroom, the inaugural project at dreams comma delta dresses the former suite with self-reflexive references to place. There’s a playfulness to how certain silhouettes in the room are recognizable in the works. A pair of embroidered organza curtains on clay rods are hung beneath a window that spans the length of a wall. Adjacent to the gallery’s door, the shape of the door knob is echoed in tempera, graphite, and ink on a large sheet of manila paper. Through this doubling, features of the room acquire a companion. Emulation is adoration.
[Image Description 1: An installation view of Aubin Kwon and Christian Vistan’s exhibition Flat Feelings at dreams comma delta. The photograph depicts three artworks hung on two perpendicular white walls. On the left wall, Christian Vistan’s grayscale abstract paintings Nocturne (Nanaimo), 2019, and Nocturne (Lemon), 2020, are vertically stacked. Aubin Kwon’s rectangular black, burnt clay sculpture Part of a Window, 2019, hangs opposite. Hovering above the teal carpet at the base of the wall, is Kwon’s oil painting, A Cliche Life, 2020. The piece depicts a reclined figure with short black hair fragmented between two glass discs.]
In Vistan’s Nocturne (Nanaimo) (2019), a mildew speckled surface becomes the landing pad for a moth whose antennae morph into the shape of a window. The painting evokes a soggy fluorescence familiar to a humid below-ground dwelling. Dampness is also felt in the gooey contours of Kwon’s burnt clay sculpture Part of a Window (2019), where a wobbly muntin is lined with shapes that oscillate between winged insects and squished hearts. Forms emerge where the clay is pinched. In this flattening, material gathers, and feeling is given a place to reside.
[Image Description 2: An abstract painting depicting a magenta form that stretches horizontally across the rectangular picture plane. Sections of the form’s contours are boldly traced with royal blue and black lines, and are further emphasized by black angular shapes that extend from the canvas’ edge. The painting’s background is a faded colour field of pale pink, lilac, blue, yellow, and orange hues, while the surface is scuffed with grey charcoal marks.]
Images courtesy of the artists and gallery:
pg. 4-5 | Installation view of Flat Feelings.
pg. 8-9 | Christian Vistan, Nocturne (A-drift), 2020, Charcoal, tempera, ink on cotton.
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