On view at Gern en Regalia is the work of the artists and partner duo Chris Lloyd and Sara Yukiko Mon. The two have come together to explore the practice of world building. In their case, it is one populated by whimsical creatures and kitsch knick knacks, punctuated by archival stickers on a suite of collages. The ultimate throughline is love amidst chaos and concessions.
Julia Kristeva conceives of love as a great untouchable. She contends that it simultaneously offers “a risk of death” and “a chance of life.” Love is unstable, at times unbearable, yet it remains something worth striving toward and nurturing.
There is a marked instability of style at play in the pieces, one that is often inherent in collaborative practices. Lloyd and Mon engage in their own version of André Breton’s Exquisite Corpse, an exercise born out of an old parlor game played by Breton and his contemporaries. With a 21st century update in both perspective and technology, the pair have employed this tradition of collective assemblage in order to interrogate different moments in their own relationship.
Printed on a checkerboard is a gleeful thumper juxtaposed with, among other things, fornicating animals and a violin playing housecat. Elsewhere, a milieu of swans, rabbits, and whistling baby birds comprise the frame of an illustrated butterfly perched atop a scene of carnage rendered in watercolor. The dialectics of creation, conflict, and transformation are pronounced here.
The love story between artists unfolds as a series of illustrations, prints and the like. Perhaps it’s all about meeting in the middle, or maybe it’s spending a bit of time on each side of a coin.
— Reilly Davidson, 2020