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Statement / Bio

The Anti-artist-statement Statement

by Iris Jaffe Published on March 29, 2013

I hate artist statements. Really, I do.

As an artist, they are almost always awkward and painful to write, and as a viewer they are similarly painful and uninformative to read.

I also don’t know who decided that artists should be responsible for writing their own “artist statement.” Maybe it was an understaffed gallery in the 1980s, or a control freak think-inside-my-box-or-get-out MFA program director, but regardless of how this standardized practice came to be, the artist’s statement as professional prerequisite (at least for artists who have yet to be validated by the established art world) has long overstayed its welcome. And I don’t think a new one should be required in its place.

No, I don’t think that artists should relinquish all responsibility for the interpretation of their work, and yes, I do believe that context and subtext can largely enhance the viewer’s experience of art in general. However, for a number of reasons, to require that artists provide this context directly by summarizing the art historical and cultural relevance of their artwork in textually explicit, objectively framed terms, is ultimately setting them up to fail.

To begin with, visual artists are visual people: we communicate visually. Descriptive writing requires much more specificity than visual communication. If we had a preference or talent for expressing ourselves through text, we would just write essays in the first place — right?

Furthermore, most “real” artists create art on an intuitive basis, which essentially involves some combination of conscious and subconscious thought. This (fine art) is different than both design and illustration, which generally tend to function in much more literal terms. For a fine artist to be entirely aware of his or her creative process and the resulting artwork thereby created is a nearly impossible feat — and one that would require essentially super-human levels of self-awareness and analytical ability on the artist’s part...continue reading


CHANDLE LEE is a multidisciplinary creator.  He creates artworks that engage and celebrate the diversity of humanity, and explore the anxieties and tensions of our time: inequality, racial & gender bias, and immigration issues.


Chandle was born and raised in the culturally and ethnically diverse country of Malaysia, he speaks English, 4 Chinese dialects, and Malay. He came to the US as a foreign student after finishing high school in Malaysia. He graduated Cum-Laude with a BS degree in Architecture from Arizona State University, and then graduated with distinction with a Masters in Architecture degree from the University of Michigan.

Chandle has been practicing in the profession of architecture after finishing his architecture program at the University of Michigan, starting in San Francisco Bay Area then New York City. He also worked in Shanghai, China. Besides practicing architecture professional, Chandle has also taught architectural design at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. He was a teaching assistant for drawing and architectural rendering at the University of Michigan. 


Chandle's life took a left turn after moving from San Francisco to New York City in 2005.  The artistic energy of New York City have awakened his inner calling to express his artistic emotions. His expertises is design and architecture graphic rendering skills allowed him to transition to painting smoothly.  He honed his painting skills at the Art Students League of New York, and has since participating in the vibrant New York art scenes.

Chandle's architecture works can be viewed at


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