Free! Divine Guidance

Maggie Yuan

Did You Ever Find Your Way Home? (2022)

Maggie Yuan: I wave 'hello' to the me from so long ago. HEIC
Maggie Yuan: I wave 'hello' to the me from so long ago

The search for unity amidst disparity. Applying a collage ethos to the mediums of drawing, sculpture, and installation, my pieces incorporate charcoal and color pencil as well as news clippings, trinkets, and salvaged trash. My art is a time capsule: an accumulation of spontaneous gestures, old memories, and poetic verses. Recurring motifs such as the color red, the American flag, and fragments of text trace of Chinese American identity. Found and saved objects, from old wooden shelves and embroidered hankerchiefs to Chinese postcards and my mom's calligraphy sheets, ground the work in personal history and grain new life in the process.

Much of my inspiration stems from my desire to capture the spontaneities and mundanities of the moment, a goals central to poetry and literature. In my artistic practice, I impose productive constraints and preserve serendipitous mistakes. Annotating on top of what is already there, I remix, rework, and re-contextualize my subject matter. I often swing between the urges to create visual harmony and to depict mayhem, two warring themes that emerge from my OCD-addled brain. My collages and assemblages are vessels through which I can interrogate the memories, inadequacies, and words that haunt me—to make some sense of chaos.