Lust fills the mind with maddening undeadness and shakes one to the bone with want and longing. The muscle is the mind captured by this foreign agent that comes when it comes and leaves just as swiftly. Is this why Christianity considers it a sin: that lust is without ceremonial dignity? Or is it merely that lust draws us into unveiling ourselves as beings following, without knowing, another law. But didn’t Saint Paul write that law is sin? And that without law sin lies dead? Wht is lust a? expresses these questions in layered images and texts that aren’t in themselves hot or bothered in any way.
Wht is ?
This series of handmade books and e-books made by Paul Chan uses a special technique of overprinting images and texts onto existing sheets of book paper to create works that read like nothing else. The series premiered at the 2011 NY Art Book Fair. Each handmade book exists as an edition of one with two artist proofs, and as an e-book with a unique ISBN available on Apple iBooks.
Paul Chan is an artist who lives and works in New York. His work has been exhibited widely in many international shows including: Making Worlds, 53rd Venice Biennale, Venice, 2009; Medium Religion, ZKM, Karlsruhe, 2008; Traces du sacrê, Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2008 and the Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of Art, New York, 2006. Recent solo exhibitions include Paul Chan: The 7 Lights, Serpentine Gallery, London and New Museum, New 2007–2008. In 2007, Chan collaborated with the Classical Theatre of Harlem and Creative Time to produce a site-specific outdoor presentation of Samuel Beckett’s play Waiting for Godot in New Orleans. Chan’s essays and interviews have appeared in Artforum, Frieze, Flash Art, October, Tate etc, Parkett, Texte Zur Kunst, Bomb, and other magazines and journals.
backlighting the pile up
The excess in this case adds up.
The scrolling screen need not stop. The effortless finger remains weighted on the button. Back lighting the pile up, Chan utilizes a special linguistic trick. The words read as a continuous rhythm with images that move around and overlap in a seemingly random sequence. Each page exists as a sequel to the previous page.
The images showcase legibility and are unpredictable in how they frame the words. Unsure at times, when the images disappear from behind the text that perhaps they have not yet loaded properly, we are implicated into the memory of what we call into expectation. A memory of mantra.
Communal self-hatred sews itself a quilt called Ocean Waves. These bookends construct one long narrative on how and what, wishing for the type of woman one may (dis)claim. Borrowing terms ‘tutor’ and refraining from the overuse of ‘dolphin’, every occupation known to Woman is listed and revoked.