Press / ArtScene
Moira Hahn at Gregorio Escalante Gallery
Combining a vibrant color palette and the delicate details of Japanese wood block prints, Moira Hahn's "Night of 1000 Fire Monkeys" dazzles in a fresh spin on Japanese printmaking inspired by Buddhist Hell scrolls. Hahn, who spent six months living in Japan watching the creation of wood block prints, has produced works in vivid watercolor that beautifully weave intricate Japanese imagery with touches of modern technology, humorous takes on today's society, and witty anthropomorphic creatures.
Fun meets fine art in Hahn's elaborate world, with each piece telling a compelling and complex story, a compact fairy tale with political or cultural punch. Hahn substitutes anime figures and images of current pop culture and current events for 14th century images. The most recent piece is "Heaven and Hell Series VI/Wind Demon," with Donald Trump cast as the demon himself. In "Spring Snow II – triptych Bats and Cats," cats clad in traditional Japanese robes fend off an attack from a vicious looking bat, while a monkey studies his iPhone.
With background in film graphics and experimental animation as well as fine art, Hahn creates paintings that could easily be in motion, narratives that are as sharply satiric as they are beautifully drawn.
Gregorio Escalante Gallery, Chinatown
[ view exhibition ]
"Year of the Monkey Series / Fire Monkey," 2016, watercolor