“Taming Training Balance,” the traveling solo exhibition of the works of Siew Lian Lim, will be presented in DeKalb, Chicago, Aurora and St. Charles during the months of March, April and May.
Lim is in her third year at NIU, where she is an MFA candidate in sculpture.
In addition to her studio work, she has been conducting research on shadow puppet theater in Asia and the West, including field research on Wayang Kulit shadow puppetry in Malaysia. She also has been serving as a technical assistant at the NIU Art Museum.
Lim’s current work portrays a cowgirl’s taming a wild stallion as a narrative – a progressive self-portrait of Lim’s quest for the meaning and balance of life.
Accumulated from the artist’s daily life, repurposed food wrappers from the United States and Asia and plastic file folders are sewn together to create an installation of stationary shadow puppet sculptures that live, breathe and speak through their materials, their textual concepts, their gestures, positioning, scale, color and their shadows.
They speak of restoring balance within by taming and training the wild stallion – the wild mind. They speak of restoring balance with the environment by repurposing materials (some of which are suspected of containing poisons) that usually would be discarded to become landfill. They speak of restoring balance between all beings by using thread as a bridge to connect materials from different cultures and by melding together the cowgirl and the stallion into one.
The quest leads back home, where the heart is, where the mind is trained and practiced through daily living, back to where it all started – to blessed emptiness.
For viewers who are seeking the answers to life’s questions and the meaning of life, this exhibition can call seekers home to where the heart is, to look at their own minds to restore and maintain balance. This journey of horse taming, mind training, can inspire viewers to cultivate their own minds and find universal balance – “Humanistic Spirituality.”
- March 19 to 23, Taming Training Balance, MFA Thesis Exhibition, NIU Gallery 215 North, 215 N. Fourth Street, DeKalb.
- Reception scheduled from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, March 21. Southeast Asian music by the NIU School of Music Gamelan Ensemble (Jui-Ching Wang, director) and performances by members of NIU Center for Southeast Asia Studies SEA Club will take place from 6 to 7 p.m.
- April 4 to 19, Horse Taming Mind Training Universal Balance, Columbia College Graduate Art Gallery (4th floor), 33 E. Congress Parkway, Chicago.
- Reception scheduled from 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday, April 19. Artist talk at 7:30 p.m.
- April 15, Echoing World Culture, Annual World Music Concert, Boutell Memorial Concert Hall, NIU Music Building, 3 p.m.
- April 23 to 26, Horse Taming Mind Training Universal Balance, Marmion Academy Dr. Scholl Gallery, 1000 Butterfield Road, Aurora.
- Reception scheduled from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Thursday, April 26. Artist talk at 4 p.m.
- April 26, Echoing Universal Balance, NIU Institute for the Study of the Environment, Sustainability & Energy Annual Film Festival, Egyptian Theatre, 135 N. Second Street, DeKalb, 4 to 10:30 p.m.
- Reception scheduled at 7:15 p.m.
- April 28 to May 16, Horse Taming Mind Training Universal Balance, Norris Gallery, 1040 Dunham Road, St. Charles.
- Reception scheduled from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 16. Artist talk at 3 p.m.
For more information, call (815) 758-1351 or email [email protected].