Chris Lloyd & Sara Yukiko Mon’s Two Birds

Photos courtesy of the artists and Gern en Regalia NYC
Review by Rebecca Storm

Why do birds suddenly appear everytime you are near? Just like me, they long to be close to you.

The familiar melody emanates from a small plexiglass music box, featuring a spray of plastic wildflowers with two butterflies circling above it. It’s one of the featured sculptural works in Two Birds, One Stone, by artist-and-partner duo Sara Yukiko Mon and Chris Lloyd, on view now at Gern en Regalia. 

At first glance, the curation of works seems to boast tropes of blossoming young love—stuffies, butterflies, kittens—but the quivering line work and intricate illustrations reveal that it is perhaps not merely love that these works seek to explore, but equally the romance of the misunderstood, the unknown, of fantasy. Lloyd, a multimedia artist and photographer working with found materials, and Yukiko Mon, a designer and artist, employ an exquisite corpse method of collaboration, building upon the others’ work, to explore their own relationship. From our very first teddy bear friends to our loyal adulthood pet companions, animals placate the mortifying ordeal of existence. Life’s more complex and mysterious facets—death, love, sex—somehow feel easier to understand when euphemistically padded through the iconography of the animal kingdom. From pixelated slug sex to copulating wild cats; to illustrative studies of narcissistic delusions by way of sad swan and earnest elephant; to shrines of cuddled stuffies—the nuances of the wavering degrees of love echo within. Loneliness, joy, confusion, longing. The reconciliation of the primal with the romantic. A taxonomy of animal idioms in One-trick Pony underscores the human temptation to use our friends from another kingdom to better understand ourselves, and the people we love. Two Birds, One Stone is open until January 15th at Gern en Regalia.

The nightingale, tells his fairytale
Of paradise, where roses grew
Though I dream in vain
In my heart it always will remain
My stardust melody
The memory of love’s refrain

Thank You For Letting Me Be Myself, Plush 27” × 27” 2020

Love Me Tender, Ink, graphite, and watercolor on paper 9”×12”

Dog Eat Dog, Ink and watercolor on paper 12” × 16” 2020

To My Tired Heart / A Loving Resurrection, Graphite and watercolor on paper 9”×12”

Puppet Show, Plush 9”×11” 2020

Dreaming in a Hemlock Patch, Prints and trinkets 12” × 16”

Salty, Graphite on paper 9”×12” 2020