Including a repeating motif of fictional cityscapes, Kevin Chen’s drawings feature intricately detailed minarets, towers and capitals which he has called “fictional cities,” inspired by a combination of archetypes and styles. This series of work, “The View from There” was prompted by the artist’s shifting perspective of urban vistas and skylines after relocating from New York to Oakland. “Out here in California, there is a lot more space and vistas where you can see the urban fabric from a distance,” he said in an interview with KQED. “I became entranced trying to capture the feeling you can get from seeing the city from afar.” Both familiar and foreign, city skylines instigate reflection upon the feeling of anticipation, whether towards a return to home and familiar place, or the allure and excitement of reaching foreign lands and travelling. The gallery also provides magnifying lenses to view the exacting detail of Chen’s miniature drawings, a tool that the artist himself uses when drawing in order to, he says “…create a series of work that rewards the viewer with each subsequent deeper look.”
Frances Glessner Lee (1878-1962) was a millionaire heiress and Chicago society dame with a very unusual hobby for a woman raised according to the strictest standards of nineteenth century domestic life: investigating murder. And she did this through a most unexpected medium: dollhouse-like dioramas.