Jacob Wan, “overnight”


Jacob Wan
West Melbourne, Florida

painting, drawing, sewing, printing, letter stamp foil, vinyl on hand-dyed bedsheets
12′ x 12′ x 12″ picture, size varies base on the installation

Artist Statement

Growing up as a gay boy, the bed has become a utopia and comfort zone for hiding and avoiding the attention of hatreds; seeking and imagining the demands that are not allowed by society.

Using bedsheets is inspired by the private experiences of avoiding reality. The bedsheet as the second skin, the closest layer to the body. Besides the psychological moments, the sheet also carries fragments of skin, hair, and body fluid, the physical evidence of the identity. It becomes a page that records time, thoughts, and dreams; demounting the protection, decompressing the tensions, and immersing into consciousness. The sheets were slept on, and the marks and histories were left on originally. I kept the sheets in faded red, a pinkish tone to express how the society has been trying to erase the existence of the LGBTQ+ identity, and a similar color that often reflected in gender stereotypes. The different colors of threads present different relations or identity, thoughts of love, family, and the ideal.

Believing in the self is a power to continue and reduce harm from the outside. Through making overnight, I intend to deliver a message of the importance of having hopes and love the self.

As a contemporary bookbinder and Chinese gay man, I craft conceptual books to explore identity, sexuality, and human relationships. My handbound books, book-alike objects, and book installations portray solitude, delineate intimacy, and evoke an immersive atmosphere. By experimenting with the materiality of the page, thread, and cover, I deploy personal memories to celebrate the importance of oneself.