Jonathan LeVine Projects is proud to open 2022 with Temples, Gods and Robots, debuting nine new sculptures by Vietnam-based artist Kumkum Fernando. The artist’s inaugural online exhibition with the gallery will open on February 16th and offers a sweeping introduction to the universe of Reborn, an ongoing project that re-imagines found materials into contemporary art objects. With his latest body of work, Kumkum draws inspiration from the past to create fantastical visions of the future: mighty robots, flying contraptions and mystical beings.The sculptures included in the Temples, Gods and Robots collection were conceived from historical aesthetics. Kumkum is drawn to designs from Asian tribes and indigenous peoples: jewelry, rugs, masks, and ornate doors. These traditional objects – such as window patterns from ancient temples found in various parts of Asia – are transformed and given new life as cosmic monoliths The characters that emerge are equal parts action figures and idols and are lovingly created with exceptional craftsmanship.
It takes months to produce each intergalactic figure, from inception to creation. Kumkum’s illustrations and blueprints are rendered into individual building blocks, which are hand-sanded and constructed in a labor-intensive process. Color and silk screen designs are added to bring vibrancy and depth to the blocks. The pieces are finished with a high-gloss lacquer, using traditional Vietnamese techniques. Each of the limited-run sculptures includes its own lyrical origin story written by Kumkum.
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