Life is emotionally abusive, as existential philosopher Taylor Swift has noted. Sometimes it feels like we can’t escape the angry rain clouds trailing us from our apartments and into the deli aisle or the dentist’s chair. If you’re a character in one of Luke Chueh’s paintings, that rain cloud will look like a fleecy cartoon bear, gloomy but loveable, material proof of your anxiety for everyone to see.
Working in his trademark style—pop surrealism with a dash of minimalism—Luke debuts his melancholic new series Peering Through the Darkness, which runs Aug. 26 through Sept. 30, 2023, at Corey Helford Gallery (CGH) in downtown Los Angeles. Both haunting and humorous, Peering Through the Darkness explores a complex range of emotions through anthropomorphic characters, like the bear in “Storm Cloud” (below). Bears and rabbits, acting as stand-ins for the human condition, find themselves in increasingly absurd situations, forced to answer existential riddles wherever they turn.
A rising star in the Los Angeles art scene, Luke is a Chinese American artist who moved to L.A. from Fresno, CA, in 2003 to pursue a career in graphic design. In his downtime, the designer began painting as a hobby, filling his canvases with lots of bears and the occasional rabbit, wolf, unicorn, or jack-o'-lantern. Peering Through the Darkness marks Luke’s first major solo show at CHG since Intensive Purposes in Feb. 2021.
Open to the public and free of charge, Peering Through the Darkness appears in CGH’s Gallery 2 alongside Camilla d’Errico’s Nurtured by Nature in the Main Gallery. If you’re in the Los Angeles area, stop by the gallery for the reception on Aug. 26, 2023, from 7 to 11 p.m. For more information, please visit the CHG’s website.
Bears and rabbits, acting as stand-ins for the human condition, find themselves in increasingly absurd situations, forced to answer existential riddles wherever they turn.
All photos published with permission of the artist(s).
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