Milano Chow: The Painted Screen

In Real Time and Space
by Lara Saget

MC Installation 1

Milano Chow’s exhibition, The Painted Screen, installed at Chapter NYC invites the viewer into fragmented, disorienting scenes. Her intricately rendered works combine graphite pencil, photo transfer, and paper to manipulate placement of common structures—a door, a lock, a mirror, a fan, a mantle, a switch, a note, a photograph, a human.

Her five works situate the viewer in a highly charged, psychologically riveting sphere, engaging in fundamental inquiry of how object relationships reconstruct space. Chow superimposes mounted photo transfers, which cast shadow to alter depth perception. She utilizes repetition and mirroring to create thematic and yet enigmatic connections. The scenes weave in and out of one another, building a narrative in which logic collapses- a mirror closes a door, a door houses another door, frames encase decorative elements, frames encase plot-driven scenes. 

MC Installation 2

Milano Chow. The Painted Screen In Real Time and Space. 2015. Installation view.

The viewer enters and exits the images, moving in and out of actual space. The walls of Chapter NYC are painted a gray tone; the architectural moldings within the gallery echo the graphite moldings within the works themselves. In this way, the gallery space becomes a part of Chow’s scenes. The spatial disorientation that Chow achieves with the installation and the rendering of works themselves create a multi dimensionality, which successfully confounds notions of placement and the semblance of orderly experience. 

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