Dinh Q. Le, Immolation (2002), C-print
and linen tape [Elizabeth Leach Gallery, Portland, OR, thru Apr 26, 2003]
Dinh Q. Le: Waking Dreams
Elizabeth Leach Gallery
Portland OR thru Apr 26, 2003
Le migrated to the US in 1978, at the age of 10. During his childhood in Vietnam, Le watched his aunt weave traditional grass mats, the origin of his technique. Dinh Q. Le creates large-scale photomontages by weaving strips of photos together using a plating procedure. The works are glossy tapestries made entirely out of C-prints that reveal images layered in a repetition of patterning. Finished on the edges with linen tape, his craftsmanship is precise, intentional and immaculate.
Using imagery of himself and his family, together with photographs taken of the Vietnam war, Le creates dramatic work. In the latest piece Waking Dreams, Le juxtaposes dual themes of beauty and terror, merged with eastern and western cultures. Current and historical, as well as, personal and fictional realities which resonate in these potent works. have a fluidity akin to painting.
With an interest in the ongoing effects of the Vietnam war on past and present societies, Le is addressing compelling subject matter from a rare sociopolitical perspective. He continues to document subjects in his native country such as birth defects caused by the U.S. militarys use of Agent Orange. Le has also worked with Cambodian refugee children, and often draws from personal experience of life in Vietnam during and after the war.