Event Title
Expanding - Eel - Devourer
Name San Diego Mesa College Art Gallery
Address D-101, 7250 Mesa College Drive
City San Diego
State CA
Zip 92111
Opening Hours Reception begins at 4:30pm, talk at 7:00 pm. Regular gallery hours: Mon - Tues - Wed - Thurs 12:00 - 4:00 pm. PARKING IS FREE ON RECEPTION NIGHT. You may park anywhere in the lower student lots as w
Location 0
Telephone 619.388.2829
Email amoctezu@sdccd.edu
Web Site http://www.sdmesa.edu/art-gallery/
Contact Alessandra Moctezuma  
Fee Free
Reception Date 9-3-2009
Dates Starts On 9-3-2009   Ends On 10-1-2009
Opening Days Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday
Opening Time 04:30 A.M.
Event Description Opening Reception and Artist's Talk for Alexander Lee. ---- Lee transforms the gallery into a volcanic seascape where sculptural fragments, large-scale wall drawings, and cultural artifacts reference the creation myth of the island of Tahiti. As a boy growing up in French Polynesia, Lee became fascinated with local lore and the fable of a young maiden who rebels against the gods, swims in a forbidden river, and, as punishment, is devoured by a gargantuan eel. Her rebellious act unleashes a chain of events that give birth to the Pacific island. ---- Black sand spills across the gallery floor as the viewer witnesses the clashing of tectonic plates, the devastation and drama of a geological eruption. The Expanding-Eel-Devourer emerges out of this primal muck, the body of the wondrous fish, cast in resin and black sand writhes around the room. Remnants of his macabre feast are testimony to the giant snake’s carnivorous desire. Disobedience leads to mayhem, destruction fuels creation. ---- The defiant act of the maiden references anthropological interpretations of the origin of Tahiti, where a clan of villagers exile themselves from the highly religious life at Opoa (island of Raiatea, formerly Havai’i) and, guided only by the stars, flee on their canoes to find and settle in Tahiti-manahune, plebeian Tahiti. Lee’s narrative sculptures dwell on the process of cultural construction, the layering of myth and history that contribute to the development of the Polynesian people. His installations become artistic examples of this cultural sedimentation. ---- Lee is also preoccupied with the clash between Western and Polynesian cultures and how the creation of myth and stereotype from different perspectives contribute to the construction of the Other (the exotic native). He ponders on this conflictive and sometimes violent exchange, and sees it as “an ecology of carnivorous relationships.” Ultimately his artwork and the process of artistic creation serve as a quasi-anthropological case study that can render the Tahitian story of genesis and relate it to a universal truth: our human need to understand our origins.

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