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Paul Chan

American, b. 1973

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Paul Chan

American, b. 1973

311
Followers
Biography

Driven by the conceptual and formal possibilities of the tension between light and dark, and good and evil, Paul Chan is best known for his projected animations that use shadows and silhouettes to engage cultural commentary and contemporary modes of communication. In an extended series of animated videos (featured prominently in his 2008 solo exhibition “The 7 Lights” at the New Museum), a diverse cast of objects, symbols, and characters fall through the air in an eerie nod to catastrophes and phenomena like September 11th, the Apocalypse, and the Rapture. His practice also includes text-based paintings, posters, and books that explore allegorical themes including technology, spirituality, war, and death. In the same way that Chan’s shadow animations suggest new definitions for familiar symbols, his texts create alternate readings. One poster, plastered throughout the streets of New York City, read, “You think things will end. And that will be the opening. I want you to know things don’t think to end. And that is the promise and the threat.”

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Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
User
Solo show at a major institution
Guggenheim Museum, and 4 more
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and 15 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
Artforum, and 7 more
Fair
Included in a major biennial
documenta, and 6 more
Biography

Driven by the conceptual and formal possibilities of the tension between light and dark, and good and evil, Paul Chan is best known for his projected animations that use shadows and silhouettes to engage cultural commentary and contemporary modes of communication. In an extended series of animated videos (featured prominently in his 2008 solo exhibition “The 7 Lights” at the New Museum), a diverse cast of objects, symbols, and characters fall through the air in an eerie nod to catastrophes and phenomena like September 11th, the Apocalypse, and the Rapture. His practice also includes text-based paintings, posters, and books that explore allegorical themes including technology, spirituality, war, and death. In the same way that Chan’s shadow animations suggest new definitions for familiar symbols, his texts create alternate readings. One poster, plastered throughout the streets of New York City, read, “You think things will end. And that will be the opening. I want you to know things don’t think to end. And that is the promise and the threat.”

Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
User
Solo show at a major institution
Guggenheim Museum, and 4 more
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and 15 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
Artforum, and 7 more
Fair
Included in a major biennial
documenta, and 6 more
Articles Featuring Paul Chan
Frieze London Remains a Harbinger of Contemporary Art Trends
Oct 15th, 2015
Frieze London Remains a Harbinger of Contemporary Art Trends
2014’s Prize-Winning Artists
Jan 19th, 2015
2014’s Prize-Winning Artists
5 Conversation-Starting Art Books for Your Coffee Table
Jul 30th, 2014
5 Conversation-Starting Art Books for Your Coffee Table
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