Kitchens: A portrait series

It occurs to me I never got around to sharing my kitchen portraits from last fall’s APAture show. This is an annual show for emerging Asian/Pacific Islander American artists (APIA or APA, hence APAture), put on by Kearny Street Workshop, the nation’s oldest APIA multidisciplinary arts nonprofit. APAture is a multi-day, multi-city event, with artists selected by curatorial committee, and in recent years it has been organized by a dedicated group of volunteers who revived it after a funding-necessitated hiatus. I had a wonderful experience with this show and everyone involved in it.

For posterity, and the benefit of those of you who couldn’t make it to the event, I offer this virtual re-staging. Click on any image to enlarge.

next four photos © 2014 Kearny Street Workshop/ Astra Kim

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Lisa Hsia at APAture 2014, photo by Astra Kim / Kearny Street Workshop

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photo © Kevin Hsieh

From Kevin

Lisa Hsia
Kitchens: A portrait series
2014
Watercolor, marker, graphite on paper

Kitchens depicts Bay Area residential kitchens in apartments, condos, houses, and one sailboat. In these portraits, the kitchens’ larger fixtures are sketched only lightly, while the contributions of the kitchens’ users — food, implements, ornaments, linens, random detritus — are meticulously rendered in color, albeit with a sense of temporariness, deriving from the absence of shadows. Although it is these objects (and their placement) that give each kitchen its unique character, they are easily consumed, rearranged, and replaced, their existence ultimately as ephemeral as residence itself.

Each portrait was generated start-to-finish in a single session, with the vantage point of each determined by a combination of available lighting, kitchen layout, and the artist’s interest. The kitchens’ owners/users were also asked not to tidy. Thus each piece can be seen not just as a portrait of a particular kitchen, but as a capture of that kitchen in one specific, unrepeatable moment.

Jenny and Em, 8″x13″

Kitchen portrait: Jenny & Em, by Lisa Hsia

Nayomi, Candi, Yosmay, and Alina, 8″x13″

Kitchen portrait: Nayomi, Candi, Yosmay, and Alina, by Lisa Hsia

Anna and John, 11″x12″

Kitchen portrait: Anna and John, by Lisa Hsia

W and B, 11″x12″

Kitchen portrait: W and B, by Lisa Hsia

Lisa Marie, 12″x13″

Kitchen portrait: Lisa Marie, by Lisa Hsia

EurJean and Bobby, 13″x10″

Kitchen portrait: EurJean and Bobby, by Lisa Hsia

Yu-Ting and Joshua, 8″x15″

Kitchen portrait: Yu-Ting and Joshua, by Lisa Hsia

Bright and Dave, 12″x13″
Kitchen portrait: Bright and Dave, by Lisa Hsia

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