".....Lin Yan works with the empty surface of xuan paper as well as with the saturation of ink. Somehow both aspects of her artistic approach reach the same conclusion, which is related to the emptiness of nature, a kind of hovering in time, an absence replete with meaning that dissolves before one’s eyes."
----- Robert C. Morgan, Brooklyn Rail, July 2012
“Lin Yan --- whose father, mother and grandfather are all respected figures in the oil-painting world --- opted for layered, embossed and crumpled paper wall works, some resembling abstract reliefs, in which a nontraditional element, surface texture, predominates to mesmerizing effect.”
----- Richard Vine, Art in America. Jan. 2008
“Lin Yan, the third generations of a family of distinguished artists, returns to the forms of objects recognizably of her homeland, while retaining the impressions of her New York City life.”
----- Edward Leffingwell, Art in America. Jan. 2007
“Lin Yan’s pensive work draws on minimalist tendencies in painting from Ad Reinhardt to Sean Scully.”
----- Rex Weil, Artnews. Jan. 2003
“What’s interesting about her work is not its general post-Minimalist “look,” which feels somewhat dated in a New York context now, but the way it uses elements of multiple styles to bring histories, past and present, together.”
----- Holland Cotter, The New York Times. Nov. 1, 2002
Lin Yan explores the possibilities of working exclusively with a black palette. Mixing black colour with chrome, the works tend to change dramatically according to light and location. Most of Lin Yan’s installations are made of a large number of small black drawings and paintings that she then carefully assembles together. It seems that she approaches the creation of an installation piece as if she were to write with black ink in space, turning her writing into ideogram. The effects are subtle, elegant and balanced. With labyrinth-like shapes and angles, Lin Yan walks us through what builds the starting point of most of her work, her provide garden – the streets of Beijing.
----- Oliver Sand, Asian Art, 1998
She shapes her black fields into three-dimensional installations whose forms carry very personal meaning. The black in itself remains compelling and mysterious, but that sense of mystery combines with a sense of loss. Lin Yan's use of combined media is daring and innovative, sweeping aside preconceptions dictating the separation of Chinese ink from Western media.
----- Britta Erickson, Art Asia Pacific, 1998
Selected Recent Reviews:
Arte Fuse: The Harmfully Active and Helplessly Receptive: Paperweight by Lin Yan at Gallery Fou 03/20/2014
Selected Catalog Essays:
Catalogs: LinYan 2008 & LinYan 2010
"The Gateway to the Future" by Robert C. Morgan 2008
Catalog: Lin Yan - Echoes in the Moment
"Tradition as Visual Memory" by Zhijian Qian
"作为视觉记忆的传统：林延的近作" - 钱 志 坚 2006
Catalog: Three Generations of Chinese Modernism - Qiu Ti, Pang Tao, Lin Yan
"Three Generations of Chinese Modernism" by Eleanor Heartney "中国三代现代主义" - 爱林诺尔 哈特尼 1998