56 bogart

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Several of my drawings will be available at this show for prices under $100. This is a good opportunity to see my work in person as well. One day only!

Beg the Raven

56 Bogart St., Lower Level
(Corner of Harrison and Bogart)
Brooklyn, NY

3 PM – 8 PM, Saturday May 27th

Alessandro Keegan
Bob Szantyr
Elisa Soliven
Jaqueline Cedar
Jennifer Sullivan
JJ Manford
Jon Lutz
Liz Insogna
Max Razdow
Vanessa Albury

Beg the Raven is a one day, pop-up studio sale at 56 Bogart, Brooklyn (L train to Morgan Avenue, in Bushwick). Each artist will present a number of works including paintings, drawings, sculpture, photographs and artist books - all at a range of affordable prices less than $100.

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My Name is Yao Hai. I was born in 1980, a year the Chinese government began to carry out the one-child policy. My parents were both farmers and primary school teachers. We lived in a very rural village called the Garden in Zhangye, Gansu. My uncle’s father used to travel and collect many ancient bamboo books, slips bound together in sequence with thread, each slip is a long narrow strip of bamboo carry a single column of brush-written characters. I used to borrow the books from my uncle and read them in my parent’s wheat field and sometimes at school. My primary school teacher begged me numerous times to lend the book to him for one day. I used to ignore him because I didn’t think he could understand any of the content written in ancient characters. But I did borrow to him once.  One morning before I went to school, I brought one of the book with me wrapped in my worn out shirt. One day all the books were gone. My uncle traded all the ancient books to a businessman for a few hundreds. The businessman collected antiques from village to village. I was too young to do anything.

There was a man in our village who had great drawing skill. Villagers were willing to pay as much as they could afford to get this man to paint on coffins. My father used to think that i could paint on coffins too at my age of 7 and since then he never worried what I could do for living.

In 1999, I made all the way from Garden to the capital city Beijing where the sky was always blue in posters. Shortly after my arrival, not only I did not expect the polluted air, I also realized education fuels with bureaucracy and worship could ruin one’s consciousness.   

A few days ago, I wrote on my studio floor in Bushwick. An artist came to ask if my calligraphy was real characters or fake. I guess it doesn’t really matter.

My name is Yao Hai.

56 Bogart Street, Bushwick, New York