“Either/Or” is a solo exhibition of works by Todd Lim at Booth Gallery inspired by the title of Søren Kierkegaard’s masterpiece. “Either/Or,” explores two world views, one centered on the aesthetic life and the other on an ethical life. Kierkegaard’s purpose, according to the author, was to ‘exhibit the existential relationship between the aesthetic and the ethical in an existing individual’ and remind people ‘what it means to exist, and what inwardness signifies.’

The artist, intrigued by the idea of combining painting and philosophy, has decided to take inspiration from Kierkegaard’s work to answer his own existential questions. For the exhibition Todd Lim has adapted these concepts to the labyrinth of his own personal philosophy to seek the core of his inner truth. Todd Lim’s work reflects the intrinsic torments, entanglements and manifestations of his thought process while incorporating the essence of our time – the deeply disturbing uncertainties of the human kind’s future. In his paintings and sculptures he evokes the past with a sense of both relief and nostalgia by juxtaposing the techniques and subjects of his first creative experiments to a well-thought-out mythology of the present. Lim wants to investigate the complex yet ambivalent mechanism of visual perception with a particular attention to the human condition.

Lim’s provocative work shakes the ‘here and now’ with an intermittent flux of concepts and questions; contemplation and action are two sides of the same coin. His art conveys an ongoing attempt to intervene on certain socio-psychological imperatives through a lucid yet subjective interpretation of reality. His use of paint is both physical and conceptual, and represents his interaction with his own self, governed by instinct and reason, powerlessness and control. It also embodies his most intimate interactions with the outside world, ranging from notions of time, space and consciousness to the meanings and struggles of our daily life. His bright palette collides with his nihilistic inclination to tragedy while playing with the ‘coexistence of opposites’ – a strategy often employed by artists, writers and scientists to delineate the dichotomies of the human existence and nature. In his version of “Either/Or,” Lim juxtaposes visual communication tactics and pop culture imagery with poetry, psychology and other subjects that contribute compelling content to his work.