Surface, line and angle all combine to intriguing visual effect in the paintings on view in Timon I: Elements in Space. Otherworldly landscapes and interiors seem to immerse visitors to the exhibition in an expanse of natural and domestic motifs. Timon I delicately arranges subtle shifts of elements in space, modulating angle, perspective, line, gradient and color contrasts to offer harmonious vistas for the viewer. By placing the visitor within familiar yet ethereal scenes, the artist offers a springboard for guests’ imagination. Timon I is cognizant of the many aspects he balances when creating these artworks. “My work [engages with] my experiences of living in Minnesota and Hong Kong: two opposite places. I put objects from both environments to [create] balance.” This tenuous balance is held in place by a careful consideration of color tones, spatial dimension and a gratifying contrast of light and shadow.
The powerful presence of natural elements permeates works on view including “Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow” and “Leap of Faith.” In this first work, a fuschia light source builds jewel tone shadows around reeds and flowers encroaching on a bathroom sink. “Leap of Faith,” meanwhile, offers a vertiginous perspective built up around the visual texture of dappled light cast across a jungle scene complete with underground waterfall. The mystery Timon I builds up in these painting’s layers rests in the mysterious presence of humans just out of view of the picture plane. The formal realism and deft brushwork in these paintings build up magical yet tenable worlds at human scale throughout the gallery space. The artist recognizes the impact of certain elements across his compositions. “Light and color have always been the core and essential elements of my painting, [and] these two elements together create a sense of sublime…transcendence.” These dual aspects are faithfully expressed in Timon I’s paintings where he notes, “the idea is to allow viewers to look into my paintings, like looking through a window to see a different world.” Visitors to Timon I: Elements in Space can encounter enticing and mysterious scenes at this captivating solo show, on view from February 2-25, 2023 at VillageOneArt in Chelsea.
Growing up with dyslexia, communication difficulties and sensory overloads have always
existed. It didn’t get better when I had to deal with extreme environmental changes at a young age. I once moved alone from a bustling city like Hong Kong to an isolating town in Minnesota when I was a teenager. The unreachability and inescapability of other people both induced anxiety. I finally settled in New York as an adult. However, I still felt uncomfortable and lonely when adapting to new environments and situations, no matter how many times I had experienced them. I almost felt hopeless, but as an existentialist, I wanted to grasp the positives and find a solution to organize my mind so I could live close to people in New York City without feeling overwhelmed. My experiences have inspired me to find comfort in painting my ideal living environment. I balance nature and city elements in New York City on my terms in my paintings. Dyslexia has also caused me to think in pictures instead of words; an image of nature often grows in my mind when I look at city elements and fantasize about my ideal living space. I translate that exact vision in my mind onto canvases with oil paint. Painting these artificial natures in my mind has created a safe space for me to reset, recharge and find quietness in this busy city. The comfort and the solution that allows me to express the pictures in my mind fully have become the positive things I grasp in the dark.
February 2 – 25, 2023
February 2, 2023, 18:00 – 20:00
Village One Art
150 W 25th #403,
New York, NY 10001
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Timon I (b.1995) is an oil painter born in Minnesota and raised in Hong Kong and is currently living and working in Brooklyn. His past living experiences in both rural and urban places have inspired him to paint his ideal living environments by balancing nature and city elements in New York City. Born with dyslexia, Timon thinks in pictures instead of words and often transfers that exact or enhanced vision from his mind on canvas to depict his safe space.
He graduated with a BFA in illustration at the School of Visual Arts and recently received an MFA in Painting at the New York Academy of Art. He also has received the La Ceiba Grafica Residency award, and his work was published in juried exhibitions-in-prints, such as Friend of the Artist.
(text & photo courtesy of the artist)