Entering Tishan Hsu’s studio, I notice, among the clutter of tools and books and notes, a rubbery ear sitting on the table. And on the walls: eyes, noses, nipples, and skins, all repeating like distorted code across a series of artworks hung on the wall. Kindly but cautiously, Hsu offers me green tea. It steeps as we walk around. The art seems to breathe. “I always felt from early on that technology was going to profoundly change our lives,” he says.
Hsu—one of the few Chinese-Americans who found success in the 1980s New York art scene—was known for his hybridic, sculptural paintings and installations, and was shown by titanic dealers of the era such as Pat Hearn, Colin de Land, and Leo Castelli. I’m here to discover, among other things, why he disappeared from public view for nearly two decades—only to reemerge this year with a series of major shows.
published in artsy, jan 2018