Patch, a two person exhibition of works by Shanta Rao and Jo-ey Tang, ran from October 3 to November 7, 2015 at Paris’ Galerie Nathalie Obadia. Focusing on a piece of material that is used to cover something else, the press release places the show within a context of varying patch types: “…software code that fixes a bug; a small piece of material to mend a garment; nicotine substitute; an indefinite period of time; a protective covering over a wound or an injured eye; a cloth badge worn as decoration or insignia of an affiliation; a small plot of land or a gallery space…”
Rao’s monochromatic and abstract language works its way through a variety of media and interrupted by Tang’s poetic texts of adhesive lettering on the wall:
“I watched him.
Emerging from a nap with head embraced by arms, opening
onto a document of density,
of sweet void.”
Rao looks at the relationship between surface and deep space by mixing materials that play off one another. Defying the mutability of black-on-black, or matte-on-shiny, the Sans Titres (2015) series absorb into each other, creating a porous effect of interpenetration. Using silkscreen across a variety of rubber, copper and wood paneling, the works begin with an image derived from a primary form of a pixel. Punctuating these works is the triptych of Tang’s ‘Document from Like An Intruder, The Speaker Removes His Cap’ (2015), on which sheets of adhesive plastic collect cigarette butts from his previous exhibition, here tamper with drips of butterfly pea flower tea. Originating from one ‘document’, panels are dispersed, forming what Tang calls “a state of inextricable separation, a self-extraction from the self”.**
Exhibition photos, top right.