Kien Situ presents ‘TECTONIC’ at Passage Gallery

19 Jan 2024

Kien Situ unveils his inaugural exhibition for 2024, titled TECTONIC, at Passage Gallery.

Aligned with Lunar New Year, the artist has harnessed Lunar GIS data and architectural modelling systems to manifest a segment of the moon. This manifestation takes shape as a monumental singular landscape slab crafted from Chinese Mo Ink and Gypsum Plaster, prominently installed within the gallery.

This particulate matter, seemingly unbounded yet with intrinsic form, assimilates itself to the strict shape and dimensions of the room. Creating an interior environment referencing an exterior world, Situ has created a bridge between the terrestrial and astral. Echoing this formation is the title of the exhibition, TECTONIC, which draws from Situ’s architectural background; a term referring to how matter converges; or, how it is wilfully separated.

TECTONIC unifies two materials, Chinese Mo Ink and Gypsum plaster, to create an immense peak where geology, time and identity are all interwoven. The Chinese character for the word ‘Ink’(墨) is composed of two other characters – ‘black’ (黑) and ‘earth’ (土), a nod to the geological origins of the material. Ink is the prime material for Shanshui paintings (mountain-water paintings) and similarly creates the foundation of calligraphy. Both examples hold ink as matter which yields great power, the ability to transmit thought across space and expanses of time. Much like many Chinese words, 墨 is also an ideogram, an image that can communicate both thought and feeling.