Could there be a brightly colored robot lurking beneath your great aunt's Ming vase? Part traditional Chinese vessel, part manga-inspired mecha, these colorful pieces of pottery are sure to liven up any mantle.
Artist Brendan Lee Satish Tang created the Manga Ormolu series as an exploration of cultural mixing, blending traditional high art with modern pop. It's meant to reflect on cultural appropriation and assimilation, but with fun, slightly ridiculous results.
Manga Ormolu enters the dialogue on contemporary culture, technology, and globalization through a fabricated relationship between ceramic tradition (using the form of Chinese Ming dynasty vessels) and techno-Pop Art. The futuristic update of the Ming vessels in this series recalls 18th century French gilded ormolu, where historic Chinese vessels were transformed into curiosity pieces for aristocrats. But here, robotic prosthetics inspired by anime (Japanese animation) and manga (the beloved comics and picture novels of Japan) subvert elitism with the accessibility of popular culture.