Venue: Gasworks, 155 Vauxhall Street, London SE11 5RH
Gasworks presents Soft ground, the first UK solo exhibition by Hong Kong-based artist Trevor Yeung. Yeung’s work uses botanic ecology, horticulture, photography, and installation as metaphors to understand social relations.
His carefully staged installations subtly address systems of control and power structures. He often uses plants as cyphers, borrowing from their structure, care, and maintenance to think about intimate and personal experiences. Intermingling plant, animal, spectator and participant, Yeung’s work prompts us to consider how emotional and behavioural conditions in our everyday life are determined.
Yeung’s exhibition at Gasworks delves into the complex social dynamics and interspecies relationships in London’s gay cruising areas. Central to the exhibition is a scale recreation of Hampstead Heath’s infamous “fuck tree”, a notorious ageing oak whose sturdy trunk is bent low and whose bark is polished smooth following its regular nocturnal use. Cast in soap, Yeung’s version fills the dimly lit gallery with an earthy, moist scent – evoking a liminal space of desire, longing, and shame.
Employing light and scent as key elements in his sculptural work, Yeung transforms the gallery to explore the fluid interplay between night and day, public and private life, hiding from others and being seen.
Yeung’s exhibition is commissioned and produced by Gasworks, London in partnership with Para Site, Hong Kong; Aranya Art Center, Qinhuangdao and with the generous support of the Henry Moore Foundation and Blindspot Gallery.