Joseph Lee / Passive. Aggression
Passive. Aggression / Joseph Lee
Sep 8 – Oct 1, 2022
GR Gallery
New York, USA

GR Gallery is pleased to present Passive. Aggression, a solo exhibition of new paintings by self-taught artist Joseph Lee. Passive. Aggression documents Lee’s time during 2020–2022. As his daily distractions dissipated under lockdown, he was forced to examine gaps, namely his liminality and inability to verbally communicate emotions, which made him unrecognizable to himself and others around him. Lee is both Korean and American, husband and son, actor and painter, passive and aggressive. Lee’s subject matters grapple with the way his liminality and thus, lack of a solid identity, began to impact the world he inhabited. The artist’s first instinct under duress was to isolate and paint. During these years, the process of creating the works showcased in Passive. Aggression was a salve. To finish a painting was not the intent. These works capture moments in Lee’s life where he deflected to his studio in fear and uncertainty. At the time of inception, these paintings were the best representations of what words escaped him, to convey – in composition – what he was unable to articulate. They are a line of expression uninterrupted. Passive. Aggression is a collection of the artist’s self-reflections, love letters, & apologies translated onto canvas.

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