Tishan Hsu:
    Liquid Circuit

    Tishan Hsu: Liquid Circuit

    Sep 24, 2020–Jan 25, 2021

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    Tishan Hsu: Liquid Circuit is the New York-based artist’s first museum survey exhibition. The exhibition traces Hsu’s key ideas and demonstrates how they clearly resonate in the works of younger artists coming of age today. In the mid-1980s Hsu began a series of works that considered the implications of the accelerated use of technology and artificial intelligence and their impact on the body and human condition. His work is distinct from well-documented approaches to artmaking in the 1980s that relied upon strategies of appropriation, a use of references to popular culture, as well as Neo-geo and other tendencies toward abstraction. Yet Hsu’s work takes on minimalist legacies in its reduced forms, and also processes the textures and colors of screens and other aesthetic clues of the emergent information age. The artist’s work throughout this period considers the object’s phenomenological properties and the shifting visual landscape.

    Trained as an architect at MIT, Hsu’s art has an idiosyncratic materiality that is informed by his education and the budding East Village scene of the time. His use of tiles, for instance, suggests the architecture of domestic interiors, but also points to the construction of digital images as many discrete units of data. His use of alkyd, resins, and urethane responds to materials developed and used in burgeoning industries. Bringing together roughly thirty key sculptures, wall reliefs, drawings and media work from 1980 to 2005, the exhibition includes architectonic paintings and sculptures from the 1980s that considered the materiality of the image in the ever-expanding digital landscape; Hsu’s first experiments in Photoshop that mark some of the earliest instances of artists using the newly available digital photo manipulation software; and a selection of the artist’s drawings and other projects. The exhibition demonstrates Hsu’s prophetic practice and exemplifies how art responds to and processes the pressing questions of its time. Tishan Hsu: Liquid Circuit reintroduces the work of this visionary artist to a contemporary audience that has finally caught up with the issues he began to address over thirty years ago.

    Tishan Hsu: Liquid Circuit is organized by SculptureCenter, New York, and is curated by Sohrab Mohebbi, Curator-at-Large, with Kyle Dancewicz, Interim Director. Lead Underwriting of Tishan Hsu: Liquid Circuit is provided by Richard Chang / Domus Collection, and Joyce K.H. Liu.

    Born in Boston, Massachusetts, Tishan Hsu spent his first years in Zurich, Switzerland. He grew up in Ohio, Wisconsin, Virginia, and New York. Hsu had his first one-person exhibition as a teenager in Virginia, where his paintings were shown throughout the region. He studied architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he received his B.S.A.D. in 1973 and M.Arch. in 1975. While at MIT, he studied film at Harvard University’s Carpenter Center. He moved to New York in 1979, where he currently resides. Hsu first exhibited in New York at the Pat Hearn Gallery. Since 1985, Hsu has shown in the United States, Europe, and Mexico, with works in many public and private collections. From 1988-90, Hsu lived and worked in Cologne, and from 2013-16, he maintained a studio in Shanghai.

    Hsu’s work is included in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt am Main; High Museum, Atlanta; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami; and the Weisman Art Museum, Minneapolis. Hsu has served as a Member of the Board of White Columns and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. He has been a Professor of Visual Arts at Sarah Lawrence College, and a visiting professor at Pratt Institute and Harvard University.

    Tour Details

    Hammer Museum, Los Angeles
    January 26–April 19, 2020
    View installation photos

    SculptureCenter, New York
    September 24, 2020 –January 25, 2021


    Lead Underwriting support of Tishan Hsu: Liquid Circuit is provided by Richard Chang / Domus Collection, and Joyce K.H. Liu.

    Additional support for the exhibition is provided by Stephen Cheng and Empty Gallery.

    SculptureCenter gratefully acknowledges Jill and Peter Kraus for their leadership support of our exhibitions and programs. Additional support has been generously provided by: Jamie Singer and Robert Soros; Jane Hait and Justin Beal; Miyoung Lee and Neil Simpkins; Marinela Samourkas; May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation, Inc.; Fern and Lenard Tessler; Brenda Potter; Martin and Rebecca Eisenberg Foundation; Chris Grant, Standard Sculpture; Peter Stevens; Lynne R. Jacobs; Steve Shane in memory of Sonia Shaenboen; Luhring Augustine; Bella Meyer; and Augusto Arbizo / Van Doren Waxter.

    SculptureCenter’s annual operating support is provided by the Elaine Graham Weitzen Foundation for Fine Arts; Lambent Foundation Fund of Tides Foundation; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; Lee and Robert K. Elliott; A. Woodner Fund; Carol Bove and Gordon Terry; Libby and Adrian Ellis; Eleanor Heyman Propp; public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council; the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; New York City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer; and contributions from our Board of Trustees, Director’s Circle, and SC Ambassadors. Additional support is provided by the Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation and contributions from many generous individuals and friends.