Jun Yang, Adrien Tirtiaux

20.06.–18.08.2007

Jun Yang
A better tomorrow, 2006
Wood, neon installation, flatscreen, DVD, stools
5,5 x 5,5 x 3 m

Jun Yang
A better tomorrow, 2006
Wood, neon installation, video, stools, Installation view Tate Liverpool
6 x 6 x 3,5 m

Jun Yang
A better tomorrow, 2006
Wood, neon installation, video, stools
5,5 x 5,5 x 3 m

Auprès de mon arbre, 2007

Jun Yang
Somewhere over the rainbow I (Yokohama), 2006
Print on hand-made paper, cornice
50 x 150 cm, 9 parts

Jun Yang
Somewhere over the rainbow II (Shanghai), 2007
Print on hand-made paper
80 x 150 cm, 13 parts

Jun Yang
Untitled (money tree, rubber plant, ...), 2007
Cardboard, sticky tape, paint, wire
Variable size, 10 parts

Jun Yang
Untitled (money tree, rubber plant, ...), 2007
Cardboard, sticky tape, paint, wire
Variable size, 10 parts

Auprès de mon arbre, 2007
Draft

Auprès de mon arbre, 2007
Wall paint, mirrors, wood

Adrien Tirtiaux
Auprès de mon arbre, 2007
Wall paint, mirrors, wood
Installation view

Adrien Tirtiaux
Ronquières, 2002/07
Colour photograph, framed

Adrien Tirtiaux
Ronquières, 2002/07
Colour photograph, framed

Jun Yang

The exterior walls of a single-family house create a stage-like space which serves as the setting for the presentation of Jun Yang’s most recent video, A better tomorrow. He created it for last year’s Liverpool Biennial to address the relationship between industrialization and architecture. Jun Yang tracks down the historical changes – visible to this day - in the urban structure and interweaves his observations from this foray through Liverpool with his family’s saga. Migration in the course of industrialization meets up with his family’s migration from China to the West – and the subsequent return to China. Migration as wish fulfillment: For a better tomorrow.
The video consists of a documentation of the types of residences in Liverpool, from the late Victorian era to the present day. The scenes were strung together as ´establishing shots´, a technique which is employed primarily in soap operas in order to achieve the shortest possible transitions in the story-line. In Jun Yang’s film, the visual plot has been omitted; the verbal plot chronicles biographical matters, as narrative bracket, but also to contrast and complement.

Yang’s works Somewhere over the Rainbow I & II also address hope and wish fulfillment in this, his third solo show at Galerie Martin Janda. Yang revised Japanese and Chinese brochures advertising new houses and subdivisions. Idealized habitats which do not and will not exist in this form. The interchangeability of the sites and the homogeneity of these make-believe worlds evoke questions regarding the globalization of our dreams.

The globalization of our most intimate surroundings is also a theme in his most recent work, entitled Untitled (money tree, rubber plant, types of Dieffenbachia, …) (2007). A great number of indoor plants – exotic vegetation cultivated to thrive as potted plants – can be purchased worldwide, independent of provenance. In Asia, too, these life-style aesthetics are having a lasting effect on traditional relationship to nature. Jun Yang has made cardboard replicas of these plants, emphasizing their artificiality and underscoring their function as simple metaphor for nature.

Adrien Tirtiaux

In the project space, on the gallery’s lower level, we are showing the first solo exhibition of work by the Belgian artist Adrien Tirtiaux.
Tirtiaux takes the architectural elements of the rooms, as found, as point of departure for his piece Auprès de mon arbre, a continuation – this time indoors - of the contextual approach employed in his projects in the public realm. With economy of means (mirrors and paint), the lift foundation in the exhibition space and the ventilation equipment in the courtyard were clad, creating a poetic scene which makes reference to the lyrics of a song by Georges Brassens. He sings: “Living near my tree I was happy; I never should have moved away...”.
“By creating artificial nature inside the White Cube, an invitation is extended to the exhibition visitors to return to the outdoors. And yet, in the end, the burlesque camouflage of the lift’s foundation and the ventilation equipment reinforces the functional aspects. And this illusory flight requires the framework provided by institutional space.” (Adrien Tirtiaux)

Auprès de mon arbre
Je vivais heureux
J’aurais jamais dû
M’éloigner de mon arbre

Auprès de mon arbre
Je vivais heureux
J’aurais jamais dû
Le quitter des yeux

Georges Brassens