Through thousands of marks, the layering of colors and the modeling of tones, Kai Chen’s large-scale abstract paintings and drawings transcend the binary of queer suffering and pleasure into a place of complex beauty, contemplation and consolation. Chen’s paintings propose questions about what constitutes queer emotion and queer spirituality, about who gets to express emotions and be recognized, and whether it is possible for people to communicate with differences. Chen received his MFA from San Francisco Art Institute and is currently the graduate fellowship artist at Headlands Center for The Arts.