Sep. 30
Oct. 21

bathhouse by Chunyun Han

September 30, 2022 – October 21, 2022
Gateway Galleries
1601 W Mount Royal Ave

These whole series of figure sculptures were inspired by the missing public bathhouse culture in north China. The conflict between traditional cultural values and the needs of modern urban development. For the most part of the 20th Century, before hot water heaters became available to the common household, public showers and bathhouses were an important existence in China. This was not only the place for people to take a shower but a social destination for the community. The winter days were long, the pace of those pre-economic-bloom years was slow. One could easily spend a couple of hours in the bathhouse, chatting away, scrubbing each other’s backs and rinsing off all the troubles in life. With the living condition in China rapidly improving in the last thirty years, public bathhouses are coming to an extinct. Every day there are old buildings being torn down and new nostalgia being born, and the public bath is becoming a very unique and private memory that’s shared by millions. To the curious artist, the disappearance of these bathhouses is not only sentimental but also a closing door to peek into human relations. How does the context of communication change the content? It’s hard not to be honest when you’re chatting naked. Or, is it the opposite? How is human relations evolving with diminishing physical space and expanding the virtue domain? It is about the balance between losing and getting. Such is the conversation the artist has been having with the past.