Scales of Sentiment: 1992 Virginia and Rubin’s Vase

Feb. 11–Apr. 10, 2022

Mana Contemporary Chicago
2233 S Throop Street
Chicago, IL 60608

“Mind Map” is a bi-monthly program, curated by SY Lim, that invites Chicago-based artists to create a time-based and site-specific work that shows the artists’ processes. Mind Map looks into the artist’s creative process. With graphite, artists are invited to work on the wall located inside the cafe, reflecting their ideas for two weeks. The exhibition lasts for a month and a half.

FEBRUARY 11–APRIL 10, 2022
Maggie Wong, Scales of Sentiment: 1992 Virginia and Rubin’s Vase, 2022

In Scales of Sentiment: 1992 Virginia and Rubin’s Vase, Maggie Wong thinks about sediment and sentiment as forms of composition that entail an accumulation of history and feeling. A layer of graphite covers the wall, much as sediment is deposited across the earth before being compacted over millions of years into sedimentary rock. Through these rocks’ layer boundaries, we can sense pressure accumulated through time. Sentiment is similar: time becomes a pressure cooker for nostalgia, layered into the media through which we emote. Together these two points of composition alter what can be deciphered as foreground, background, and underground–not just of landscapes, but of layered beliefs about social and environmental realities.

For “Mind Map” Maggie Wong takes Sally Mann’s photograph Untitled, from Mother Land: Virginia series,1992, and the illusion of Rubin’s vase as reference points while utilizing a mark-making strategy of accumulation and erasure. The work stems from ongoing studio research into Wong’s familial connection to the American South, using Sally Mann as a proxy for her white mother, as well as recent research into geology and a visit to the iconic Double Negative by Michael Heizer. Typical to her practice, this work is a constellation of ideas, but a-typically this map emerges through drawing rather than sculpture and social space.