Fou Gallery presents "Wendy Letven: Lines Falling Together in Time" in New York

TEXT:CAFA ART INFO    TIME: 2020.2.21

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Fou Gallery is pleased to present Lines Falling Together in Time, the first solo exhibition of multidisciplinary artist Wendy Letven at the gallery. Letven’s art practice includes installations, sculptures, drawings, paintings and artist’s books. She explores a personal language of abstraction through different art mediums, with a focus on her interest in exploring and interpreting natural form, pattern, repetition and rhythm through her reductive creative process.

Letven’s installation and sculpture works blend forms and images that transform and redefine space and atmosphere in new ways. She develops her own vocabulary of evocative symbols to construct the syntax of a universal visual language. Her suspended installations and sculptures are dynamic ensembles of light, shadow, motion, and reflection as they are constantly activated by atmospheric factors such as air flow and shifting light. Their patterns, shapes and shadows interact with one another, resonating within the gallery space as an embodied material presence. Visitors to the gallery are invited to perceive between physical and illusionary distortions of the changing surroundings through space and time.

Wendy Letven, Uprooted, 2019. Stairway installation for Portal Art Fair at Governor’s Island, New York ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Portal..jpg

Wendy Letven, Uprooted, 2019. Stairway installation for Portal Art Fair at Governor’s Island, New York ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Portal.

The central installation work in this exhibition highlights an abstract river suggesting the flow of form, rhythm, and time, implying the entrance to an abstract landscape. A statement from ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu could precisely express the poetry of this abstract landscape, “Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.”

Wendy Letven, Flare-Up, 2017. Ink on Arches Paper, 30 x 22 inch. ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Fou Gallery..jpg

Wendy Letven, Flare-Up, 2017. Ink on Arches Paper, 30 x 22 inch. ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Fou Gallery.

This exhibition also features Letven’s most recent paintings. The oil paintings explore flatness and space in a similar manner as her installations and sculptures. The application of layered, vibrating lines create different spatial relationships within their surfaces as they rise and fall away. The lines synchronize in areas, and then appear and disappear from one to another space. The logic and mechanism of the painted forms suggest abstract landscapes within states of synchronicity, resonance, and transformative flux.

Wendy Letven, Winding River, 2020. Site-specific installation, painted aluminum, dimension variable ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Fou Gallery.jpg

Wendy Letven, Winding River, 2020. Site-specific installation, painted aluminum, dimension variable ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Fou Gallery

Letven’s ink painting series started in 2010 around the time of the oil spill off the Gulf of Mexico in Louisiana. Her worries about environmental changes, such as rising sea levels and super storms, have inspired her to imagine doomsday scenarios. Abstract expressions of subverted landscapes and rivers in the sky are depicted in her ink series. The series is less about exploration of forms, as they are investigations into a variety of physical rhythms. Their inquiry into the essence of flow stems from the painterly process of ink spills and liquid pours.

 

Wendy Letven, In the Current, 2020. Oil on canvas, 48 x 36 inch. ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Fou Gallery..jpg

Wendy Letven, In the Current, 2020. Oil on canvas, 48 x 36 inch. ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Fou Gallery.

Fascinated with pattern and spatial relationships for years, Letven always grows her works by combining unrelated lines, shapes and symbols to pursue a deeper level of harmony from seemingly disparate visual entities. In the past years, her focus on creation has gradually transferred from interpreting the literal environment to exploring possibilities of abstraction. Her concerns regarding the destruction of nature have been relieved, as she develops her understanding of nature, human, time and space as a self-balanced and organic integration. Her recent works are always abstract visualizations of bigger images that imply the mechanism of space and time, and the fabric of the universe. She believes in the importance of abstract connections between phenomena, and seeks inspiration from other fields, including music, poetry, science and philosophy to build up an aesthetic synaesthesia shared among these different disciplines. She refers to Swiss psychologist Carl Jung's theory that there exists an acausal connection between two or more psychic and physical phenomena or meaningful coincidence, because it expresses her strong belief in an omnipresent, deeper order of life rather than randomness. In essence, harboring a positive attitude towards the destruction, turbulence, and transformation of the world, Letven attempts to create joyful and exuberant artworks, in order to uplift her audience with peacefulness and optimism.

Wendy Letven, Flame, 2020. Painted Aluminum with on Maple Base, 18 x 8 x 5 inch ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Fou Gallery..jpg

Wendy Letven, Flame, 2020. Painted Aluminum with on Maple Base, 18 x 8 x 5 inch ©Wendy Letven, courtesy Fou Gallery.

During Lines Falling Together in Time, Wendy Letven will collaborate with percussionist Gary Fredriksen, ceramist Ruth Borgenicht, and poet Sally Bliumis-Dunn to present three interdisciplinary art events, resonating with the works and interacting with visitors.

About the exhibition

Dates: February 29, 2020 – May 10, 2020

Artist’s Talk: February 29, 2020, 4–5 pm

Opening Reception: February 29, 2020, 5–8 pm

Location: Fou Gallery, 410 Jefferson Ave #1, Brooklyn, New York, NY 11221

Hours: Saturday 11 am–6 pm, or by appointment (info@fougallery.com)

Curator: Lynn Hai

Courtesy of the artist and Fou Gallery, for further information please visit www.fougallery.com.