Folding In

Grace Qian

“Art is a way for me to understand and accept my history. It is a process of deconstructing myself and rebuilding my relationships with those around me. Through the creation of paintings and drawings, I see my work as an embodiment of connections that exist within my life. In each piece I aim to create a space where vulnerability is present without it being forced upon anyone. By exploring individual experiences of isolation, vulnerability, and their interaction with each other through portraiture, I understand that this is something that connects all of us together. As the object of my visual language is to precisely replicate a specific image, I perpetually risk failure, charging my relationship to making with vulnerability. I turn this attention and vulnerability exclusively to subjects who play prominent roles in my life. Paintings featuring individuals that I am close with not only confirm my place, but my position in relation to others. The work remembers I am not alone. My practice is a recounting of the life I live in order to remember I am included within it. The intimacy between people, skin on top of skin, the act of folding in, all becomes a shared link of vulnerability.”

Grace Qian is a high school student currently attending Etobicoke School of the Arts in Toronto, Canada. She was born and raised in Hangzhou, China, and moved to Canada in 2014. She started to develop an interest in art when she was 7. Her recent practice revolves primarily around oil painting and drawing. Through portraiture, she aims to explore individual experiences of isolation, vulnerability, and their interaction with each other. Her current paintings question the idea of the self and how it plays into the world.

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