Los Angeles–based artist Shirley Tse has long been concerning herself with the polysemous nature of things. In the past, Tse has used synthetic polymer (plastic) to address the concept of multiplicities and competing ideologies. In her new work, Tse utilizes “Quantum Shirley” as a generative conceptual framework that allows her to produce work on an on-going basis addressing the multi-dimensionality of experience, and the negotiation of realities.
“Quantum Shirley Series” forms connections across different fields, histories and narratives. It weaves together personal story, New Physics (quantum theory, parallel universe, multiple worlds theory), trade movement of colonial products, and the geographical displacement of Chinese in the last century (Chinese Diaspora.)
“Quantum Shirley Series” purports there is another Shirley in a parallel world, we just simply cannot observe that existence. Tse is intrigued by the “validation” of alternate reality, paradoxes and simultaneity offered by quantum physics.
“Quantum Shirley” at the Feldman Gallery will be the latest installment of the “Quantum Shirley Series.” Engaging the nature of the gallery as a “teaching gallery,” the Feldman Gallery will be used as a “quantum portal” by which Tse will interact with the students remotely for the first 2 weeks of the exhibition. The gallery will be the site of the “collapse of the wave function”- where a Shirley that is “not there but may be there soon” will collapse to the reality of a Shirley who will be presenting a “Quantum Shirley Lecture” along with selected sculptures made under the series.
Shirley Tse’s sculptures, installation and photographs has been included in numerous museum exhibitions worldwide, among them are The Biennale of Sydney, Bienal Ceara America, Brazil, Kaohshiung Museum of Fine Arts, Taiwan, Art Gallery of Ontario, Canada, Museum of Modern Art, Bologna, Italy, San Francsico Museum of Modern Art, New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, New York, Kettle’s Yard, UK, and Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Zealand. Her work can be found in many public collections including the M+ Hong Kong, Hong Kong Heritage Museum and Rhode Island School of Design Museum. Tse is represented by Shoshana Wayne Gallery in Los Angeles. Her work has been included in numerous articles, catalogues and publications including Sculpture Today by Phaidon (2007). She received the City of Los Angeles (COLA) Individual Artist Fellowship in 2008, the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship in 2009, and the California Community Foundation Fellowship for Visual Artists in 2012. Currently the Co-Director of the Program in Art, she has been a member of the faculty at California Institute of the Arts since 2001.
Image: Foreground: “Quantum Shirley Series: Superposition” 2009, Background: ’Quantum Shirley Series: Double Comfort of a Soft-Filled Space" 2009