Wallace Chan - 'Titans –A Dialogue Between Materials, Space & Time'
Curated by James Putnam
May 20– November, 2021
Fondaco Marcello, Grand Canal, Venice
TITANS: A dialogue between materials, space and time, features a series of titanium and iron sculptures and an immersive installation composed of titanium and steel, giving an unprecedented survey of Chan’s work as a sculptor. Together, this new body of work conveys Chan’s contemplation on the relationship between materials, space and time through titanium: a material that has long been the subject of his experimental impulses.
Whatever his medium, Chan is always driven by a fascination with materials and a desire to push them beyond their limits. Titanium, named after the immortal ‘Titans’ in Greek mythology, is the strongest, most durable and lightweight metal. Mainly used in the aerospace industry, titanium has been overlooked by artists due to its cost and complex production process. After many years of careful research and experimentation, Chan developed a method of working with titanium initially for his jewellery and more recently for his large-scale sculptures. Today, he is employing a range of sculpture techniques: from modelling and casting to carving, welding and assembling, to create titanium sculptures that are very rarely seen on this scale.
The free-standing sculpture series, A Dialogue between Materials and Time, explores the juxtaposition between the lightness and durability of titanium with iron’s weightiness and susceptibility to corrosion. Meanwhile, the site-specific installation, A Dialogue between Materials and Space, explores the illusion of space inside non-space and refers directly to Chan’s celebrated ‘Wallace Cut’, a unique technique of carving gemstones that he developed in the 1980s..
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