Taiwanese artist Leigh Wen's (鄭麗雲) solo exhibition "The Four Elements of Leigh Li-Yun Wen" is on view in the Albany Institute of History & Art from Jan. 29 to June 19.
The four elements of western cosmology - earth, air, fire, water - are the subjects of artist Leigh Wen's work. Whether paintings, prints, or ceramics, Wen's art expresses her personal and cultural histories. Having grown up on the island of Taiwan, she possesses a deep affinity for the elemental power of water and the forces of nature.
Wen's working method is a process of subtraction from darkness to light. In her work, lines flow across the canvas in rhythms and frequencies that create depths and swells on the painted surface. Color is used to expand the emotional range in Wen’s work: "my palette is drawn not from appearances but from the lyric and psychic necessities of my art." The uniformity of line, from edge to edge and painting to painting, implies suppression of the artist’s hand in favor of objectivity learned from nature. In spite of this, her work remains deeply autobiographical.
Born in Taipei, Taiwan, Leigh Wen is a Taiwanese-American artist who resides in New York City. She received her MFA from the State University of New York at Albany in 1994 and served as a cultural ambassador envoy during the Clinton, Bush, Obama, Trump, and Biden administrations. She has exhibited in 18 American embassies, consulates, and other government institutions located in countries such as Jordan, Malaysia, Singapore, Namibia, Botswana, Philippines, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Denmark, and Poland.
"The Four Elements of Leigh Li-Yun Wen" is organized by the Albany Institute of History & Art and supported by Taipei Cultural Center in New York.