ELLEN JONG

PROCESS

FORM

DISRUPTION

PLACE

In my art, I strive to inform reflections of my being, advocating for self-discovery and identity. I use personal experience, the vernacular and disruption to process and interpret life's trials. 

For the last seven years, I have been developing a material that I adapted from ancient Chinese ink-making methods that date back to 12th century BC. The traditional ink-stick is of my heritage - one of the first writing tools I used in my childhood home in Queens, NY where I learned calligraphy and painting by imitating Chinese masters including Qi Baishi. After a site-specific performance installation in Shanghai following a trip to Guilin, China, I thought “If ink can be made into a stick (traditional Chinese ink-stick), can I be made into ink?” History is written in ink. I reclaim it to write myself into history – build my legacy - and create works that represent me. Ink both invites one into the tribe and alienates, is fact and fiction, connects us and tears us apart. Ink doesn't last forever. Above all, ink has the potential to transcend, even itself. 

The new sculptural works I make with the dehydration of organic and protein-based pigment material - ink - symbolize transformation, mortality and the fluid conditions of my time. They are overlaid with anxiety, trauma and hope. The ink can be rehydrated into liquid, and will react to extreme environments. My process begins with breaking down the protein medium over heat and mixing in powder pigment. Working it involves using tools to help either warm or cool the material as I manipulate and shape it. I want to continue to push it in form and scale, and the material will be demonstrated. It is essentially alive and dying. This tension is the foundation for these conceptual works.

I was born in Queens, NY to an Indonesian-Chinese dad and Taiwanese mother, the third of four girls in our Asian-American home in a middle-class Jewish neighborhood. I attended The Bronx Highschool of Science where I took my first photography class. An apprenticeship with a photographer and my first art magazine publication took place after a stint attending Parsons School of Design and The School of Visual Arts. 

I'm the author of the photographic monograph Pees On Earth (Miss Rosen Edition/ powerHouse Books 2006) - eight years of claiming my body and place with one continuous act, and how I developed the idea of "the existential pee puddle." In the book forward, I discuss with Annie Sprinkle my desire "to break down the bathroom walls." In 2010, I self-published my second photographic monograph Getting to Know My Husband's Cock, featured in aperture Books' Self Publish Be Happy by Bruno Ceschel, and in the upcoming academic publication Radical Intimacy in Contemporary Art: Abjection, Revolt and Objecthood by Keren Moscovitch (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2023.) It was the subject of my solo show at Allegra LaViola Gallery, now Sargeant's Daughters, in 2011. Vince Aletti reviewed the exhibition of prints in The New Yorker, "it's her unapologetic lust that comes across most appealing here."

New sculptural work in ink began in Shanghai, China in 2015, developed in Upstate NY, and continues in my DTLA studio. I moved to LA in late 2019.

ELLEN JONG

(b. 1976 American, NY)

 

SOLO SHOW

2015 Sea Bounds, Basement 6 Collective Space, Shanghai, China

2012 Invisible Line curated by Amani Olu, Allegra LaViola Gallery NY 

2000 I.C.U.P, Vice Media Flagship Store on Cleveland Pl, NY

SELECTED GROUP SHOW

2021 Five Minutes To Live curated by Benjamin Tischer, New Discretions, NY

2020 The Empty Gallery Group Show 5 curated by Scott Ogden, Shrine Gallery, NY

2019 Every Woman Biennial, LaMaMa Galleria, NY

2018 Current: Abortion curated by Barbara Zucker, A.I.R. Gallery, NY

2016 The Female Gaze curated by Indira Cesarine, Untitled Space, NY

2015 I Never Could Talk To You, with Bazaar Teens, City Bird Gallery, NY

2014 XXX curated by Mathieu Borysevicz, Bank MABSociety Gallery, Shanghai, China

2011 Self-Publish Be Happy curated by Bruno Ceschel, Micamera Milan, Italy

2009 The Vice Photo Show, Le Lieu Unique, Nantes, FR

2006 Toy Box with White Box, Robert Miller Gallery, NY

2006 Speed Limit, LMCC’s Redhead Gallery, NY

2005 Pretend Friendly curated by Alfredo Martinez, the:artist:network, NY

ART FAIR

2017 Milk and Night curated by Coco Dolle, Spring Break Art Fair NY

2016 Bazarre Teens, curated by Dustin Yellen, Spring Break Art Fair NY

2010 Empire State of Mind, Staldgade 38, Copenhagen Photo Festival, Copenhagen, DK

2009 ArtLog/Manish Vora presents, Pulse Art Fair, Miami, FL

2009 Scope Art Fair, Marketplace, Miami, FL

2008 The New York Photo Festival, DUMBO NY

2005 Experiments at Scope NY, Flatotel Hotel, NY

SPECIAL PARTICIPATION

2022 Impact: LA for Choice and W.R.R.A.P Benefit on Artsy, Anat Ebgi Gallery, LA

2013 The Watermill Center Summer Benefit, The Watermill Center, NY

2013 Whitney Art Party, The Whitney Museum of Contemporary Art, NY

2012 Book presentation, The Hole Gallery Bookshop, NY

2011 MiCamera Bookshop, Self Publish Be Naughty Presentation, Milan Italy

2010 Crone Benefit, Gavin Brown Enterprise, NY

REVIEWS

Carlo McCormick, Photograph Magazine July 2012

Vince Aletti, The New Yorker June 2012

Sean O’Hagan, On Photography, The Guardian July 25, 2012

Bruno Ceschel, Foam Magazine Issue #29 Oct 2011

Alec Soth’s Best Photo Books of 2010, 2010

PUBLISHED WORKS/SITATIONS

2023 Radical Intimacy in Contemporary Art: Abjection, Revolt and Objecthood

by Keren Moscovitch Bloomsbury Publishing, NY

2015 Self Publish Be Happy by Bruno Ceschel, Aperture Books, NY

2011 Self Publish Be Naughty, Self-Publish Be Happy Publishing, London

2010 Getting To Know My Husband’s Cock, Self-Published, NY (monograph)

2009 Public Panics: Problematic Bodies in Social Places, Adam Eldridge, London UK

2007 Vice Photo Book, Vice Magazine Publishing, NY

2006 Pees On Earth, Miss Rosen Edition/powerHouse Books, NY (monograph)

CURATORIAL PROJECTS

2015 Daydream Freakout, Gallery Sensei NY

Artists: Andrea Mary Marshall, Christina Kruse, John Gordon Gauld, Nicole Wittenberg,

Phil Knott, Sophie Sevigny, Tatyana Murray, Theresa Ortolani, Willy Somma

2005 Cinco! hosted by BlackBook Magazine in partnership with Dos Equis

Artists: Abe Atri, Pia Camil, Carlos Alvaro Montero, Yoshua Okon, Diego Teo

2002 Signature Series - a permanent installation of 18 concept guest rooms, opening

reception during Art Basel Miami Beach 2002, The Creek South Beach Miami

Artists: Brendan Carney, Camella Ehlke, Devon Dikeou, Donald Hearn, Hillary Read, Hisako

Ichiki, Howard Fonda, The Inkheads, Justin Luke, Justine Harari, Kate Ruth and Brooke Geahan, Kenzo Minami, Kiku and Che Jen, Level Design, Marina Zurkow, Oliver Lutz, Shepard Fairey, UNDO

 

 

 

Ellen Jong © 2020