OnView: Journeys-John Chang

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Age Group:

All Ages

Program Description

Event Details


Central Library- 2nd Floor Display

January 8 – March 4, 2024

John Chang dreams in many worlds. In his new works, people come and go; yet no one is seen. The migrators leave their shadows in the air and their marks on the sidewalks. Their words and echoes float through storms of sharp, black fragments flying in all directions. Chang's East/West identity enriches his memory and brings flashbacks from lives lived in many places.

In classical Chinese, the script, or “shu”, is so sacred that it is believed to be capable of affecting change in the natural order of things. By invoking calligraphic forms, Chang comments on the distortion of language, yet also reclaiming the energy of the written word. Calligraphy expresses the shared space of the personal and the political. Chang is especially interested in making and unmaking meaning with the combination of word and image — particularly in this age of digital communication.

Influenced by artists like Kline, Pollock, and Rauschenberg, Chang’s calligraphic strokes commingle with expressive brushwork and drips. The abstract form allows the artist to explore Chinese characters in a personal, reinvigorated way — connecting to and balancing vital energy. The cross-cultural exchange mediated in my creative process continues to unfold and push beyond duality. In merging the beauty of traditional painting technique, modernist performance like gestures, as well as typography and imagery, I am forging an art that both creates and expresses my identity. I stand hopefully poised between ambivalent remembrance and undetermined tomorrow.

Exhibition Opportunities

Interested in exhibiting your art? Apply today! Go to mysdpl.org/visualarts

Application will be considered on a first-come basis. Organizations and individuals based in San Diego or serving primarily San Diego residents, which have not used exhibit space within the past year, will be given priority.


Need disability-related modifications or accommodations? Information and program content can be made available in alternative formats upon request by emailing JFRogers@sandiego.gov.