“I’m not ridiculing anything … but rather outlining the contradictions in life in a kind of lighthearted way.”

Born 1984, Taipei, Taiwan. Lives and works in Brooklyn, NY

Huang Hai-Hsin is untrained in painting: all she knows about it she learned in high school. Since moving to New York in her early 20s, she has developed a style both colourful and slightly crude to convey the mix of menace and farce that she sees in everyday life. Many of her rapidly executed paintings are miniature reworkings of images from institutional and media websites. She uses bright, clashing colours and odd details to invest commonplace scenes, like a Barber Shop (2011) and a pet shop in Birdland (2011), and “stories” like rehearsing for a nuclear strike, as in Indoor Practice 1 and 2 (2014), with an aura of danger or absurdity. Life is like skating on a thinly frozen lake, she believes: “People are basically happy and healthy, but there is something weird behind it.  We trust what we see or what government tells us, but there is something strange and humorous and scary behind it all.”

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