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Jan. 3, 2019
For Immediate Release

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WATERLOO – A new exhibition at the Robert Langen Art Gallery on Wilfrid Laurier University’s Waterloo campus uses elements of both Canadian culture and classical Chinese mythology to explore questions of mortality and belonging from a contemporary perspective. Heaven and Earth, by mixed-media artist Xiaojing Yan, is on exhibition from Jan. 7 to Feb. 8.

The exhibition incorporates and reinterprets two of Yan’s works: Mountain of Pines, made of sheer silk panels embedded with dried pine needles, and Far from where you divined, a series of sculptures made from cultivated lingzhi mushrooms.

“The combination of these sculptural works creates a surreal atmosphere where reality and the unknown collide,” says Suzanne Luke, curator of the Robert Langen Art Gallery. “I love that this feeling of uncertainty is translated in such in a calm and peaceful manner. Viewers are left to question the true meaning of existence.” 

Yan received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Nanjing University of the Arts, China and a Master of Fine Arts from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and she combines elements from both cultures in her work. “I filter Chinese thoughts through English words, English words through Chinese culture, and my images through the concepts of my art — all the while my core sense of self remains suspended above and between these two worlds,” she wrote in her artist statement.

The Markham-based artist’s work has appeared in solo and group exhibitions around the world, including at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto and Suzhou Museum in China, and can be found in museums, institutions, public spaces and private collections.

Members of the public are welcome to view the exhibition at the gallery, located in the Laurier Library. A public opening reception will be held on Jan. 16 from 4 to 6 p.m. Admission is free and no registration is necessary.

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About the Robert Langen Art Gallery: The Robert Langen Art Gallery (RLAG) is Wilfrid Laurier University’s visual arts centre. Exhibition programs and activities are connected to the university’s curriculum to foster creative thinking, exploration of ideas and community. For more information on the gallery and its programs, please contact Suzanne Luke, curator, at 519-884-0710 ext. 3801.

Media Contacts:

Suzanne Luke, Curator

Robert Langen Art Gallery, Wilfrid Laurier University

T: 519.884.0710 x3801

Kevin Crowley, Director

Communications and Public Affairs, Wilfrid Laurier University

T: 519.884.0710 x3070


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