Farewell the Relatives

Kang Shixin


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acrylic and sequins on canvas
130.5 x 150 cm
With an aesthetic influenced by Japanese manga illustration and wood block printing, Kang Shixin’s works explore dreams, fables and philosophy. Born in 1985, Kang Shixin grew up with Japanese animations on TV and manga aesthetics in cartoons and graphic novels. But in works such as ‘Farewell the Relatives’ the artist’s debt to ukiyo-e, Japan’s “floating world” wood block prints is evident in the simplified forms and flat planes of colour outlined in black – indeed, Kang Shixin’s solo exhibition in 2013 was titled ‘Floating World’. Kang’s imagery is deliberately ambiguous. Here, we may be looking at feathered creatures, or at koi fish merging with the ultramarine sky, positioned above an indigo dark, patterned ocean below. There is a suggestion of lanterns that may reference a funerary ceremony.
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