Adrian Kay Wong: Through the Semblance of Normalcy

Glass Rice is proud to present Through the Semblance of Normalcy, Adrian Kay Wong’s debut solo exhibition with the gallery and co-curated with Sydney Pfaff of Legion Projects. Through the Semblance of Normalcy is a visual journey surrounding familiar isolation, continuation and incidences of beauty in the everyday, conceived and made entirely during shelter in place. Wong creates moments made up of shapes that when isolated, are abstract, and when looked at as a whole, become representational. By bringing these two elements together, Wong builds a unique visual language that allows both the primary subject and contextual elements to exist in a stylistically flat, yet dimensional world as equals.

In this body of work, Wong spotlights personal yet universal scenes of quiet, still and mundane moments spent at home as a means to lead into a greater narrative that is – normalcy. Wong implores his viewers to question what ‘normalcy’ implies and what it means for our future as many parts of our world currently continue to await its ineffectual return.

In posing this question as an undercurrent in his show, Wong uses space to guide his viewers through narration by portraying scenes of where the viewer might stand, areas where figures inhabit a space and scenes of doorways and archways where the viewer might peer or pass through to a place unknown; a place beyond what his subjects have experienced. This gradual movement from A, to B, to C and reverse can be seen in the progression of Hours to Days, Days to Weeks and Weeks to Months. In this triptych, Wong paints the same scene in three iterations. In Hours to Days, a figure is seated inside a home, reading quietly as illuminated arched windows in the background light the stage. As the viewer moves to Days to Weeks, the same figure is seated in the same position, however the book is now lain on a table nearby and the clock shows a different time. As the viewer moves through this narration to the final scene, Weeks to Months, the figure and book have not moved, yet the tone of the final painting feels heavier, melancholic even, as the color palette is now a few shades darker and the passage of time is reflected in the passing of daylight through the room.

Through the Semblance of Normalcy is a portrayal of familiar spaces and interiors we as humans occupy and use, allowing viewers’ personal experiences to navigate them through layers of depth. Wong highlights overlooked and banal moments in an effort to encourage viewers to reconsider what ‘noteworthy’ can be defined as and what ‘normalcy’ can hinder.


Join us Saturday, November 7th from 11 am – 7 pm for the opening reception. In accordance with local measures to keep us safe, our gallery will be open with very limited capacity. Please email us at to reserve a time to see the exhibition. Masks absolutely required and hand sanitizer on entry.


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