River of Destiny: The Life and Work of Binh Pho presents the art and story of an important Vietnamese-American artist. A leading figure in the new international movement in contemporary wood sculpture, Binh Pho utilizes modernist approaches to painting and sculpture to create bold new work that bridges the decorative arts with concerns for narrative and concept traditionally associated with contemporary art. In his text, author and curator Kevin Wallace explores the connections between Binh Pho's life experiences and his work. Tracing the artist's inspiration back through Vietnamese and familial history, the narrative shares the artist's struggle to follow his family to the U.S. following the Fall of Saigon, which included attempted escapes and time spent in a Communist "reeducation camp". After a dramatic final escape attempt, Binh Pho was stranded on a Malaysian island, where he fell in love with Vi, a fellow passenger on the boat that took him to freedom. Arriving in the United States, the young immigrant found that his struggles were far from over, yet the doors were open for him to discover his destiny. Published in conjunction with an exhibition at the Long Beach Museum of Art, River of Destiny: The Life and Work of Binh Pho presents a story of family, friendship, dreams, struggles, love and the intersection of life and art. Throughout the book, stunning reproductions of Binh Pho's artwork illustrate and illuminate his life story; with award-winning designer Ron Shore creating a marriage of text and imagery that makes the book a work of art in itself.
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Kevin Wallace is an independent curator and writer, focusing on contemporary art in craft media. He has guest-curated exhibitions for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Craft and Folk Art Museum, Los Angeles, the Cultural Affairs Department of Los Angeles, Los Angeles International Airport, the San Luis Obispo Art Center and the Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts. He has previously curated two exhibitions for the Long Beach Museum of Art: Into The Woods and Transforming Vision: The Wood Sculpture of William Hunter, 1970-2005. Wallace is on the Board of Directors of Collectors of Wood Art (CWA) and on the Advisory Board of the Handweavers Guild of America. He is a contributing editor for American Woodturner and Shuttle, Spindle & Dyepot and a regular contributor to Craft Arts International, Woodturning, Woodwork, Turning Points and American Style. "I feel that contemporary craft artists, working in ancient media through the lens of modern art, are creating the most important art today," Wallace says of his work. "I enjoy working with the Long Beach Museum of Art because of their commitment to exhibiting this work, while placing it in the larger context of art history."Review:
East is East and West is West and never the twain shall meet, goes an old saying that's become outmoded in our ever-shrinking world. In fact, East does meet West with elegance and style in the work of Binh Pho, a Vietnamese-born woodcarver and multimedia artist whose tumultuous life story is inextricably wound into his multifaceted creations. --By Walsh, Daniella for the Orange County, CA OCRegister.com, December 24, 2006
Binh Pho has lived a fascination life: A miraculous escape from a communist prison, a tumultuous love story and a table saw. These elements and several others would make exciting and dramatic chapters in a book; however, the Vietnamese artist tells his story in wood. --By Zonkel, Phillip staff writer for the Presstelegram.com, December 13, 2006
If River of Destiny: The Life and Work of Binh Pho, guest-curated by Kevin Wallace for the Long Beach Museum of Art, doesn't instill the same sense of awe as pieces pinched from a Vatican, a Kremlin, or a Met, then nothing will. --By Scarborough, James in What the Butler Saw, perhapsperhapsperhaps.typepad.com, December 18, 2006
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Book Description Binh Pho, 2006. Perfect Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110971277265