Ken Lum, Red Circle, from the Furniture Sculpture Series, 1986, photo courtesy of the artist

Deep existential crises can beget great writing. In “Something’s Missing” (2006), Lum candidly reveals that the past eight years “was a time when I felt great disillusionment about art and great disappointment in myself, a crisis of being that I believe afflicts all artists from time to time.” This very crisis brought him to the margins of the art world, searching for answers.

Nicole Raziya Fong, <i> Self-portrait as Dawn </i>, 2020, oil on canvas, 90 cm x 75 cm

During a recent conversation with a friend, we struck upon the topic of her nearly complete collection of Nancy Drew hardcovers. I immediately pictured them as they had appeared in my childhood: books aged prematurely by the humidity of numerous seasons spent reading them in the Caribbean.

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