Coryn Kempster
Let a Hundred Starbucks Blossom

Since the 1980s when Deng Xiaoping said, “to be rich is glorious,” China has been trying to reconcile the communist principles on which the People’s Republic was founded and its escalating acceptance of capitalism. This paradox is explored in a collection of twenty-three photographs of Hong Kong youth in Mong Kok, a popular street market in Kowloon. Each participant holds a sign bearing a phrase from the 1966 Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-Tung. By changing one or two words, the quotes have all been subverted to support capitalism instead of communism, forming a Little Red Book for twenty-first century China.

Self published
103 x 131 mm, 29 pp, Black and white duotone offset, Perfect-bound, 2004
Edition of 500
12.50 CAD

Available from: Art Metropole and Printed Matter
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Coryn Kempster was born in Brantford, Ontario in 1974. He completed his Honours BA with High Distinction at the University of Toronto where he studied art and architecture before attending the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as a Presidential Fellow, earning his Masters in Architecture with a concentration in Visual Arts. He has won numerous competitions and has exhibited and published in Canada, the U.S., Germany and France, including solo shows at Vtape and Convenience Gallery in Toronto. Coryn has been an Assistant to Lisa Steele, Joan Jonas and Krzysztof Wodiczko among other artists. He currently lives in Basel, Switzerland with his partner, Julia Jamrozik. Together, through video, installations, drawings and architecture, they investigate everyday urban situations and re-present them to be experienced anew. They are interested in the public realm and in the way that individuals and groups use the space of the city, both inside and out. They begin every project without preconceived notions so they may follow an open process that consciously avoids any consistency in style or media in order to focus on the particularities and opportunities of each new situation. Working through this process of analysis and discovery, they synthesize research, ideas and personal experiences. They aim to imagine and realize artworks that focus on the specificity of place and context, while simultaneously questioning assumptions about them. Ultimately, endeavouring to create objects, spaces and situations that interrupt the ordinary in a critically engaging and playful way.

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