Ivy MA: Numbers Standing Still 馬瓊珠《數字靜止》
Numbers Standing Still
13 April – 12 May 2012
Ivy MA's second solo exhibition with the gallery, "Numbers Standing Still" inquires into our willingness to forget. On view are 8 sets of palimpsest drawings on re-photographed archival prints. Elaborating on her previous practise of exploiting the in-betweeness in cinematic stills, this new series explores the possible readings of the Barthesian punctum in testimonial images of lived lives, namely those displayed in war memorials.
"Walking Towards" sets the locus for this series. A few pixels, suggestive of a man crossing a bridge in a blitzed seaport, dominate the scene. The image found in the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum was the point of departure; vast areas are omitted through scratching and highlights are overlapped with pigments. This cropped image and intuitive transformation are the result of an intimate discourse between the artist and the said focus, as if one could almost remove history, layer by layer. "Numbers Standing Still", which lends the show its title, is a series of number plates accorded to nature's code of perfection - the Fibonacci sequence. Remnants of erasure and minute ink dots are layered over the printed matter to create depth while the hints of clothes with collar and buttons suggest that the plates are hung on a person's chest. These latest works by Ivy Ma primarily puncture the past with the present and are entwined with yearnings for a future. She poignantly presents remembering as a perpetual practise of removing vanity, and perhaps, at the bottom of it all, lies true liberation.
Ivy Ma received an MA degree in Feminist Theory and Practice from the Visual Art University of Leeds, UK in 2002. Her works have been included in the Hong Kong Biennial (2005) and are collected by the Hong Kong Heritage Museum. She is an Asian Cultural Council grantee (2007) and recently had a touring solo exhibition with the Artists in the Neighbourhood Scheme V (2011).