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Alex Chien – Plans Became Plants


Alex Chien  (b. 1994)
Plans Became Plants
acrylics, sprays and oil pastels on canvas
85 x 85 cm.

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Artist/Maker: Alex Chien (b. 1994)

Object/Materials and Techniques: Acrylics / Sprays / Oil pastels on Canvas

Date: Painted in 2020

Dimensions: H. 85 cm. x W. 85 cm.

Art style: Illustration / Graffiti art / Cartoon art / Reflections of Surrealism / Pop Surrealism

Current Location: Artist’s collection

Curator’s note: Making a more or less disguised use of the ‘subversive’ and the ‘transcendental’ which vaguely specify Pop Surrealism’s philosophy, Alex Chien introduces a utopian version of the production of plant life.

With strong auto-sarcastic attitude and an inspiring sense of eerie, he slips the audience into the perspective of an alternate reality, poking fun, while, at the same time, draws attention upon crucial environmental matters of our times through extinguishing illusions.

Cartoon tainted forms and animatedly-arranged figures, thrusting upwards across the canvas, wrapping the one around the other, and picked out in rich vibrant colours provoke such an intense vibe to the observer that captivate the eye at once.

Even the title of the work enhances the superficial embedded in the artist’s making process. It certainly offers thought-provoking starting points, and creates reflective connotations for the viewer on how great plans can create great plants.

Capitalizing on a vibrant compound, the portrayed illustration carries a graffiti expressive power that defines Alex Chien’s personal signature artistic vernacular. Apart from an overall charismatic sense of animation and a remarkable emphasis on many sided detailed complexes, all lines and figures convey such strength and power that communicate simultaneously thought and humour, plus, grouped together, reinforce the contentious cartooning act that takes place in front of the viewer.

Through exceptional technical ability and flawless execution, falling, on one hand, under the influence of Surrealism while, on the other, becoming intrigued by the aesthetics of cartoons and comics, Alex Chien succeeds in marking out the uniqueness and the dynamism of a fairly Pop Surrealist oeuvre.

Nelly Fili