(HUDSON, N.Y., October 25, 2021) – A new series of wall sculptures built from geometric planes of foam board, Venetian plaster, pigments, and beeswax by Berkshire-based artist Dai Ban are featured in Fragments of Time and Space, a multi-artist exhibition on view at Carrie Haddad Gallery now through Sunday, November 21.
The exhibit also features paintings by Anthony Finta, Ginny Fox, Carl Grauer, and Joseph Maresca. According to the gallery, “The artists in this show react to constantly changing elements such as light and shadow, nature’s seasons, or height and depth perceptions. Using abstracted observations, as well as more literal depictions, the works on view challenge our relationships to time and space.”
Modern forms, clean lines, and tactile dimensions are descriptors for Dai Ban’s abstract wall sculptures. Designed in the Berkshires, Dai Ban works with a high-density foam board material which allows him to create distinctive sculptures that appear to be cut from stone or cement. Deceptively lightweight, these constructions are often monochromatic; the Venetian plaster coated surfaces are typically pigmented with white, gray, black, or the occasional pop of color.
Early on in his career, the artist made figurative sculpture, creating a design in his head and then recreating it with his hands. After many years, he found this approach to be too limiting. Today, he tunes into the unconscious mind, resulting in a process that is spontaneous and intuitive. Each work in this exhibit is endowed with a quiet elegance, embracing minimalist thought and design.
Dan Ban’s new works take a more fluid approach to minimalist design by avoiding intentional thought and allowing the form to freely come into being from a “deep subconscious reservoir”. Beginning with a maquette, Ban experiments with angled foam board, constructing it into countless iterations until it appropriately captures ephemeral moments or feelings. After being distilled into something purely abstract, the sculptures’ sentimental nature is hinted at with titles like “Waiting for the Storm to Pass”, “Shy Little Brother”, or “Please Leave Us Alone.”
According to the artist, “In my work now, the form comes first. I avoid intentional thoughts. What happens then seems to emerge from some deep subconscious reservoir: maybe from childhood, maybe from an unconscious feeling in the moment, maybe from something beyond this lifetime. I just let it come out until the form feels right. There is a sense of freedom from conscious deliberation. Then I engage in the conversations with my form and finish it without decorating but try to keep it pared down to what is essential. With hundreds of iterations of the same movements, the same strokes, I apply plaster compound to each surface until I find the right colors, the right shades, the right textures until everything is settled into place.”
Dai Ban received his education from Musashino Art University in Tokyo and currently lives in the Berkshires. The artist has been represented by the gallery since 2016.
Carrie Haddad Gallery is located at 622 Warren St., in Hudson, N.Y. The gallery is open daily 11am to 5pm, except Tuesdays, when it is open by appointment only.