gummi Chandelier ii in detail

gummi Chandelier ii in detail
Inside the gummi bear Chandelier Jr.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Patrón residency on Hollywood Blvd.

Patrón Spirits Company created an artist residency program, “Simply Perfect,” which transforms vacant storefront windows into artists studios. Across the country from NYC to Chicago, SF and LA, artists are invited to create works live for 7 days and all finished works will be auctioned off to benefit local art organizations.

Here is a brief account of my journey from Dec. 20-26, 2011

Dec. 20, 2011 Tuesday

Sliced a chuck of my right thumb off last night. A great way to start a sculpture when one is right handed and needs to use power tools.
Reclaimed one of my previous sculpture and carved patterns on it. The rough plaster texture reminded me of a moon. A moon means a moon rabbit to me because I'm a Chinese, and rabbits living on the moon is the most ridiculous thing I've heard yet my favorite folklore in the world.

Dec. 21, 2011 Wednesday
Tourists are aimlessly naming what they saw on Hollywood Walk of Fame outside the window. My favorite Meryl Streep is right there, very close to me. That is an auspicious sign.
More carvings today: rabbits x 3 and mushrooms x 2. Seeing through a mushroom cutout, there is the hopping rabbit!
Sanded all rough edges, created enough plaster cloud to bury me.

Dec. 22, 2011 Thursday

There are a lot of movie characters standing in front of Kodak Theatre so tourists can take photos with them. Today I spotted a Bumblebee from the movie Transformers, whose costume probably has stilts built in to elevate him. He walked like he has injured hips... perhaps stung by a real bumble bee!
Back to the studio, finished carving, primed surfaces, started weaving the main rabbit with chicken wire. Oh gee, I left home exhausted, especially after seeing how odd that big head is.

Dec. 23, 2011 Friday

There is an increasing degree of excitement on the streets today. Liquor, Christmas, plus Hollywood Walk of Fame, even a soul will get lost.
For a whole night, I debated between faith and free will. You may think me as silly, of course that big head does not work on that rabbit, but life has played so much tricks on me that I no longer can tell what is natural or unnatural. "Free will" is what I chose this time.
Chopped off the head and made a new one!

My favorite conversation from the other side of the window today:
Girl: What's this?
Boy: Arts and crafts... engineering...
Girl: Is that an upside down rabbit she cut out? Look, it is. It's a rabbit on the globe.
Boy: All I see is bubbles of chicken wires, lots of bubbles of chicken wire. (laughter)
Girl: She's making a rabbit, look! look! She's making the ears now! You See?
Girl: Apparently you don't know anything about this.

Dec. 24, 2011 Saturday
Did a lot of art supplies shopping in the morning. I swear I need to have a weekly updated inventory of everything Home Depot, Lowe's and local art/craft supply stores carry so I can be pre-warned if they stop carrying a certain item.
Today's job is to stretch fabric over the rabbit form. Primed the globe more. Tested the lamp base before I left... hm... jolly good! I left the light on for the night so Santa can see some art!

Dec. 25, 2011 Sunday
Cut into the left thumb this morning while sculpting the mushrooms, with 10 fingers left, I returned to work with pressure from the deadline.
Painted the rabbit with iridescent paint, very pearly! Started playing with acrylic paints on the globe. I name the purple-cobalt turquoise-maroon Palette of Urban Winter, perhaps inspired by the Hollywood locomotion.

Dec. 25, 2011 Sunday
Lobbying for husband's help, we installed the mushrooms. Epoxy clay all around and underneath to attach the mushrooms to the globe, I bet they won't budge. Continued painting, glued some fabric cutouts, finished 92% by the time I left.

Thank you, Roosevelt Hotel and Patrón, for a lovely and surprisingly productive time! Thank to all the pedestrians who stopped by, offered encouragement and/or entertained me with your conversations! Yes, I can hear you!

More updates on where to bid for this sculptural lantern, stay tuned!

Friday, November 04, 2011

Email campaign reorganization

Recently reorganized my email campaign with MailChimp. It is free and lots to learn. A pat on my back for sitting in front of computer for hours torturing my mouse with millions of clicks!

End result is worth it. The future arrives with ease; now that is one more routine simplified.

Saturday, September 10, 2011


Continue the preparation of a solo show in den contemporary. Some works need to be remodeled or cleaned, new works are being born everyday. It is a blessing to have something to look forward to, yet carefully I tread the water of ego boosting. It is crucial to remain balanced so the ego doesn't blow up in my face.

Much growth happen this year, able to weld with little help from my teacher, able to keep busy in a slow time, able to stay with my work until it is done right, able to be calm in fear. Through a good opportunity like this, I see the path travelled, understand myself from the view of the world. Works seem different in appearance, yet all summed up my interests in organisms. For it be my concern in food safety, fantasy in animals' emotions and observation in the thinking process, I'm intrigued by how beings live.

You, as a being, are invited to experience the exhibition

"Soft Tissue"
den contemporary art, Los Angeles, CA

Sept. 22 - Oct. 28, 2011
Opening reception: Thursday, Sept. 22, 5-8:30pm

Solo show exhibiting gummi bear sculptures

glass sculpture in a large installation

works on paper

and other secrecy sculptures!
Come claim your surprise! Thank you!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Trinosaurs installed at Flag Stop 2011

Mommy and baby Trinosaurs are in for the Flag Stop event at Torrance, CA.

FLAG STOP is a new, alternative contemporary art event featuring shows by 50 exhibitors around the world, including Howard Fox, Emeritus Curator of Contemporary Art, LACMA; Scott Canty, Director/Curator of the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery; Lily Siegel, Curatorial Assistant at Moca, Los Angeles and many more noted galleries and curators.
DATES:Friday, September 2 - VIP Reception 6-9pm ( I will attend the Reception as well as live sculpting in one of the PODs... what is a POD? come and find out!)
Saturday, September 3 - free public admission 12-6pm
Sunday, September 4- free public admission 12-6pm
LOCATION:South Bay Lexus
24777 Crenshaw Blvd., Torrance, CA 90505
Visit FLAG STOP's facebook page to sneak preview the art and artists!

My favorite view of the Trinosaurs are their eager behinds:

In such eagerness they follow their mother, towards a world unknown.

The concept of this piece came from my observation that higher social class people have more access to nutrition knowledge while the lower class were left behind regarding the access to fresh and affordable produce as well as knowledge to the ingredients in foods.

A 1992 Finnish report concluded that "Men and women of lower social class follow trends set by upper social classes with a time lag of about ten years." This was in the 90s, as more food deserts looming in the US now, I think the 10 year gap is in no doubt widened to 20 years. Yes, some families still eat like dinosaurs and all that artificial ingredients are doing their job fattening the defend less people.

Not just the refined sugar one should be concerned about (they are now made of GE sugar beets), FD&C Yellow 5 is derived from coal tar. They are the main ingredients in gummi bears. Do you still love gummi bears as much as I do?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

a tunnel in progress

Caught a glimpse of the new gummi bear sculpture in progress. My devoted assistant Anna strung countless gummi bears, I'm now in my own endless minutes of tying them onto the armature. Four baby ones are waiting on the assembling line, while two petropods are drying.
It is in an empty time like these when hands are busy but mind is idle that I see stillness.
It is understood that something agreeable is arriving and the expectation is staggering high.
This is the silence before the storm hits. 

It reminds me that I was once a greedy one, like large egos I see everywhere I turn. Politicians are no longer the ones who want to be at the center of our lives. Artists crave to be celebrities more than ever in human histories. Unfortunately the world is a larger puzzle now, meaning each of us plays a smaller role.

Based on the fear of not having, not being, we behave like adrenaline facing death. When the stillness arrives, I ponder, if one will not be famous, will not make a difference in the world, will not make great works defined by others, nor will she make a living, what is she?

That day I came down from a hill just burned by a wildfire, the voice told me, "you may never make it," then, "But that is ok."
"Is it ok?" I ask the perfectionist in me, "what are you?" 

Introducing Be.Bee.

Mr. Be.Bee. maintains 8 hours of work hours per day without lunch or bathroom breaks. His target market is to serve oregano nectar to the colonies. He is polite and grateful for the garden I supplied. He would make a great candidate working in the studio!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Face lift and Heart lift

This is exciting, my molasses speed finally catches up with the new and pretty template designs. Blog is getting a face lift! Since the body turns sleek, the heart must not be too gloomy.
Time to pretend life is an endless stream of satisfaction!

All these happen because something exciting is coming. Watch out, a boat is sailing to your river, catch it and hop on board!

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

call myself an artist

11 years ago this month, I graduated with a MFA, armed with an unfinished film and no fine art trainings at all... All I wanted was to become a real artist.
So I started taking drawing and sculpting lessons and called myself an artist.

11 years later this month, I'm in the midst of reconfiguring my art career, work directions and struggling to differentiate my own truth from society's truth.
Life seems more interesting back then when I was a phony artist dreaming a dream.
A phony artist I was, but a real self knowing who I am.

Perhaps it is time to go back to the very basic, sculpting.
After all, it had never failed to break the curse of a chattering mind and idle fingers.
In 30 days, I shall call myself an artist again!

Matt Cutts: Try something new for 30 days Video on

Thursday, May 05, 2011

seize new opportunity

I have repeatedly missed many good opportunities because I was afraid of commitment. Freedom is over emphasized in my spoiled memory perhaps. Jump on it when I see it coming from now on, even when I am not ready! This delightful event could be one that you don't want to miss:

"A New Day" exhibit at Bellrock Media, this Friday, May 6,  6:30pm - 11:30pm
100% of artwork proceeds donated to charity:
American Red Cross - Japan Earthquake and Pacific Tsunami

Bellrock Media
2917 Santa Monica Blvd
Santa Monica, CA

30+ artists exhibit to help Japan relief and you will see this new piece from my studio
"Encrusted" barnacle sculpture with miniature seaside mountain landscape inside
and another oceanic piece, watercolor drawing of octopus "Mothers in their Den"

Those pieces are part of “A New Day” this Friday.
100% of the proceeds to benefit Japan relief.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

New York City journey II

A visitor.

I spent a summer in NYC studying English while I was 17. My eldest sister was working on her PhD in NYU at the time. It was a liberating summer which rooted my fond memory of Manhattan. Returned to Manhattan again several times in my adult life, I grew to love Queens for its humble scenes and the cutting edge art venues.

PS1 is my must visit and every trip I was blown away by the artists/works they shown. It is my charging and challenging station, never fail to question me what contemporary art is and where I want my artwork to be.

Socrates Sculpture Park is the second on the list. It fulfilled my wildest dream that emerging artists can also have a space and opportunity to create public art. Snow was deep, we carefully trekked through the park; this place worth our 20 minute walk from the subway station in 30 degree wind and getting our boots wet.

This is a lovely piece named "Argyle" by Daniele Frazier. Look at how the colors on the sides create this very flat shadow, so 2D and 3D at the same time. Marvelously standing in snow against the busy skyline. Thumbs up, Artist!

Another piece that fed my appetite, "Sponge Piece for Socrates" by Jory Rabinovitz. Yes, made of sea sponges and concrete, metal. NICE! It is innovation and originality. Also, it turned out that there is a floor element that was buried by the snow.

And David M. Scanavino's “16 ft. Rope in Three Positions: (catenary, taut, and coil).” The impressions left by the rope on concrete shaped these three pieces. Smart and good looking, as art should be!

It was as joyous as winning a lotto when we walked into Ursula von Rydingsvard's exhibition at Sculpture Center.
You know once a while you run into a master sculptor's work, all you want to do is to curl up right next to it, sleep inside it, touch, rub, lean on it or lay on it. I lingered, and while nobody is watching, I laid inside this oceanic tidal mouth "Droga"! Ahhhhh... the ceder aroma, soft like Ursula's voice, I float on top of marks left by her...
In a side room, we discovered this "Ocean Floors." "Breath came out of one's life" was what I felt when I first encountered this piece.

 Look at the layers and how she "scooped" the cedar. Mark by mark, chisel by chisel, the texture is just magnificent. After finishing my cardboard pit in Bisbee, I just love the shape in this scale. Thank you, Ursula!

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

New York City journey I

Feb. 2011

Visited NYC to install a piece at Broadway Gallery, plus visiting friends and some of my favorite art spaces.

Work first. Spend a few days installing the work, a series of wall sculptures in the shape of barnacle clusters with vignettes of islander lifestyle inside, lit by led lights. Mom's calligraphy studies was the background on the wall. This is a piece about the encrusted memory of my childhood in Taiwan, an island country where ocean strongly influence every aspect of our lives. I could not remember a moment when we didn't have the sea in our mind, the temperature of the ocean, breeze and typhoons from the sea, the animals in it, the tides, the smell, color, texture and sound of the water.

Collaborator choreographer Malini Srinivasan came for a preview. This was our first time meeting each other. I knew right away, I have been very lucky to have found her. Here is Malini peeking into the sculptures

We saw a sneak preview of what she has in mind for the performance. Prior to my arrival, I asked Malini if she could choreograph a short dance to the concept of islander culture and fishing villages.

Swimming, nature and ocean sound informed this dance. Malini is a third-generation Bharatanatyam dancer, choreographer and teacher. On the opening night, gallery visitors and all of us had the privilege to see her in action. It was a beautiful piece and quite a meditation for all of us, as the gallery owner Abra­ham Lubel­ski put it, "it is the same feeling when one watches sunset or sunrise. It is subtle yet powerful!"   

I had 6 days to locate a videographer for documenting the live performance after I arrived in NYC. Pulling out all the contacts from facebook, I found old friends from Calarts who had moved back to east coasts. Universe showered me with goof fortune once again as friends reached out helping me locating a videographer! Performance and video artist Run Shayo documented the whole performance. Next day, I picked up the DVD and set up the video projection so viewers can see what happened on the opening night.

This has been a growing experience for me. Some last minute emergencies where a cable was missing or a contact did not come thru. At the end, all turned out to be perfect. I was able to put a complicated piece together and learned again, there is no strange land, there are artists who are ready to be friends everywhere, well, at least in NYC! Thank you, NYC!

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Bisbee Journey III

January 22, 2011

Three weeks is a long time to germinate lots of seeds. I made friends with local artists, grew to love the land and the people and animals, settled in & felt right at home in the housing SCP provided (Thanks to Ed and Kelly Briggs!), learned where to get what I want, did a presentation at Trickhouse Live event curated by artist Noah Saterstrom in Tucson's Casa Libre en la Solana (and had a wonderful night with local artists), and went for nature walks with Pete's family. All while I juggled between the pit and a series of sculptures for a NYC show in Feb.. 

Finally it was born, not just the pit, but a beautiful moment made possible by participating audiences.
Here is the map projection of the 15' diameter Lavender Pit, titled "The next open door."

White portion on the right is the building across from my studio. Everyday at sunset, windows in that building reflect the copper shimmer from the sun, telling a story only a copper rich town can understand. I had cultivated my skills making little houses, boulders and cactus out of cardboard. It was fun!
This purple rock was inspired by a visit to filmmaker and mixed media artist Rebecca Barten's studio. Rebecca turned me into a mineral crazy and I discovered the unpredictability of geometry on cardboard!

For unknown reason, I love this gold rock. CSP Executive Director Melissa Holden brought her seedpods which is perfect match of colors and forms. Good eyes, Melissa!

The lampshade featured letter "B" was modeled after the "B" on Bisbee's hill which was lit for Christmas and New Year. The pit is also filled with locally found natural elements and treasures from Bisbee's dangerously addictive (luckily affordable) antique stores.

Fine moments of the pit installation:

A tall and slender man showed up at the reception. His name is Paul. Paul introduced himself to me and handed me this postcard.
I asked him if this was his stories, he nodded with tears in his eyes. "It is beautiful, Paul! Thank you!" I found a spot between two little houses where red Christmas lights shine and stood the card there. He then gave me a small sage stem, we used it as offering for the spirit of his late husband. I think his late husband had brought him to Bisbee and here to my installation. Thank you, Paul! This piece is complete because of you.

Later Ben (Pete's son) and Roman (Rebecca Barten and David Sherman's son) came with their hike finds, pretty rocks, leaves, branches and Ben's personal collections of scorpions!
Kids are inventive where they locate their contributions. They can see what adults don't see. I find Roman's placement of leaves very poetic!

Copper Donkey is a tribute to donkeys who worked deep in the mines in old days. There is a copper man statue standing tall in the city of Bisbee. I think donkeys need to be honored too. Thanks to Laurie McKenna's contribution of her chickens!

Of course, a mining town must have trucks and machinery. This section was probably inspired equally by Pete Seeger's Mrs. Clara Sullivan's Letter as well as the operations in Bisbee.
 To see more and larger images, please visit my website page for this installation:

Thank you, Bisbee!

Bisbee Journey II

January 3, 2011

Good friend Pete Goldlust, also a member at Central School Project, helped me settled in in my studio. I will be working in this 100+ year old building for the next three weeks.

Said goodbye to husband in Tucson airport, I went back to the studio, laid out all tools, getting ready to detach from California life and start an Arizona one.

Wondered to a local restaurant and located my favorite sources of materials to build the pit: cardboard boxes of potato fritters! In a week, I have this:
Another week, the pit grew:
It took a shape of a coliseum which inspired me of a positive link to the Lavender Pit. In the mean time, I met many local artists who opened their arms welcoming me. My heart felt warm, wanting to spin a promising image out of this pit. Therefore, another decision was made, this shall be a collaborative and participatory project where local residents have their voices heard.

Bisbee Journey I

January 2011 I traveled to Bisbee, AZ as a visiting artist. I stayed for three weeks, created a site specific installation, befriended many great artists and fully inhaled the Bisbee creative energy. Here is a brief record of the journey.

Jan. 3, 2011

Husband and I drove to Naco, a neighboring town which borders Mexico.  I had intention to build an installation related to border issues before I arrived. However, the tall dark fence running all the way up the majestic mountain crushed my inspiration.
Dark energy looming around here, cried out as innocent lives wasted. As an immigrant myself, this is an arrow aiming at my chest. Chimneys from "the other side" emitted smoke to keep January cold at bay; symbols of warm and cozy homes turned into a picture of West Bank.
Heavy border police force is an odd image in this beautiful landscape. Mountain ranges become a little angry voice in comparison to human division.

On the way back to Bisbee, we discovered Bisbee food co-op, that was a surprising joy!
Next to the food co-op sits the (in)famous Lavender Pit, one of the open pit mines that made Bisbee one of the largest towns between San Francisco and New Orleans in early days.
Mining industries bring about complicated political atmosphere, especially when they leave earth a huge hole that oozes liquids. It is as devastated to the local ecology as magnificent aesthetically. Have I not know this pit is man-made, I'd assume mother nature created another marvelous landscape. It is beautiful with alluring charms: the muscle of the slops, the scales, the colors of the minerals that floats and it's response to sunlight.

I decided at the moment, I would like to attempt creating a pit on my own, one that reflects the colors and history without ecological price to pay.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Prayer for Japan

For a country so close to home
who gave me peace during our visit,
for a country whom we fought and learned to love,
we send our prayer.
We share so much how we live, what we eat, the way we talk and what quakes and ocean bring.
To all the friends in Japan,
we are here for you. Please be strong!

Friday, March 11, 2011

The mode of mind

The creating mode has dominated the brain for too long, causing fingers to curse the language portions of the brain.

Today the mind finally kicks in the writing mode and wish to stay in the orbit. The more proposal I wrote, the more I can write. But that will have to happen before the creating mode kicks in.

And to tons of photos, video footage and notes to be organized, the organizing mode yells "we need to update the website, blogs and facebook before the next sculpture is born!"

No such thing, the fingers pose, we've got to work to maintain the structure of the brain.

So who's born first? the artist or the artist who markets herself.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Site specific installation and performance at Broadway Gallery NYC

For The Inter­na­tional Artists at Home and Abroad Exhi­bi­tion Series at Broad­way Gallery NYC, I created a site specific sculpture installation based on islander cultures from Taiwan and invited Bharatanatyam dancer Malini Srinivasan to choreograph a short dance for the piece. If you catch us tonight, Thurs­day, Feb­ru­ary 10th, 2011, 6:00–8:00pm, you can see the live video streaming of  the reception here, as well as the performance of her dance at 6:30pm EST.

The show runs from Feb­ru­ary 4th-25th, 2011
Broad­way Gallery NYC is located at

473 Broad­way, NYC, NY 10013
The hours are Mon­day — Fri­day 10AM to 6PM
Tel: (212) 274‑8993

Hello, New York City!