Chinatown Soup is pleased to present Tall Tales, an exhibition of digital illustration and storytelling by Arthur Wu.
Myths and fables are among our earliest vehicles for moral teaching. Their characters establish norms of right and wrong through challenging circumstances that we grow to consider absurd as we age. Yet these fantastical stories, or what many call “tall tales,” persist as a venerated canon that prescribes cautionary lessons about human faults.
Science fiction, as a canon of the future, often replaces organisms with robots to present our ethical difficulties. While traditional academic evaluation reduces technology deployed as narrative device to be in service of human intent, Arthur sees a more complex, cyclical relationship of cause and effect.
In response, his work combines elements of storybooks and storyboards expanded with fractals of color-bound pixels composing naturalist landscapes laced with symbols of human invention. Humanoid robots appear, pointing their blank gaze at unfolding supernatural phenomena that feel strangely organic by design. How have the absurdities from these tall tales manifested in our mundane?
This is Arthur’s solo debut.
Arthur Wu (b. 1994) is a New York-based digital illustrator whose current work explores how technology heightens, threatens, and mutates our human experience. Being a cautious technology optimist (he uses an iPad to draw, after all), he is inspired by Ted Chiang, Ursula K Le Guin, and Alex Garland to complicate his conceptual approach. Arthur works at Palantir Technologies as a Product Manager, extending the Foundry platform to help the world's institutions make more intelligent data-driven decisions.