For last week’s artist interview, I got the chance to meet and talk to Kaclica Chhin in her show in the Merlino gallery that she shared with Amanda Ruiz. I hadn’t the chance to interview Ruiz, an illustration major, (as she wasn’t there when I was but I did get to with Chhin, who is a sculptor major. Chhin has been interested in sculpting since high school and likes 3D art because you can make whatever you want with it.
Before walking into the gallery, one can see a sign that states to proceed with caution, as there is explicit content inside. According to both artists, many people seem to shy away and don’t bother going into their show due to the warning. This is the very reason both had decided to take upon this topic as they had, that being the topic of the curiosity regarding sex– not the sex that we’re all taught (the one involving simple insertion) but the different aspects of sexuality and the mental meaning rather than the physicality.
I was hesitant to enter because I was expecting the show to contain some sort of highly graphic gore sort of display. However, that wasn’t what there was at all. Inside the gallery, along the walls are small, delicate looking drawings pinned up. There’s a massive ceramic statue in the middle and towards the back, an odd black box.
At first glance, without paying much attention, one would probably be confused as to why there was a warning outside the galley. Once you look closer, you see the real meaning behind all that is on display. The drawings are considered “explicit” in the way that they’re sexualized, the large ceramic piece i the middle is made up of women’s rears and genitals while the box inside had holes in which one dares to put their hand in (I was too afraid to but from what people had told me: it was cold and slimy, there was silicone body pieces within that you grab.
According to Chhin, she worked for 3 weeks on this specific show, from the hours devoted to make casts to putting it all together as one large piece. She really wanted to life casting for it and this was actually her first time doing such. Her ad Ruiz’s goal was to not only shock people with their gallery (which they had) but also make people feel more comfortable with sexuality. There hadn’t been much men put into the show but Chhin states she would have included more if she had more time to do so.
If you ask me, I believe that their goal was achieved in doing such. Although it appeared many felt uncomfortable, this galley did seem to open the eyes of many in regards of sexuality and everything that is behind it. I would recommend this gallery to just about anyone due to the fact that it is discussing an important matter that tends to be disregarded and many refuse to confront in our society. Although many may not feel comfortable discussing it, it’s still important to know about.