According to the artist, the panda represents the
human self. In the exhibition’s second series, “Flying to the Void,” the panda
takes on a key role, positioned in the center of the canvas at a crossroads Gong
builds from abstract shapes, minimalist and brightly hued à la Agnes
Martin. It’s a fork in the road, so to speak, and the panda must choose which
way to go. Whereas Gong’s cartoon characters and pop-culture figures bring a
comical air to many of his prior works, the panda—especially in this particular
series—raises existential questions about the human condition.