No to Self recalls the geometric abstractions of artists like Frank Stella and Ilya Bolotowsky, but Kuo emphatically asserts that the paintings are not abstract, but meticulously intentional, guided by a series of map-like legends at the bottom of the works. “The paintings are dictated by the rules that are at the bottom of the paintings. They provide the key that tells me what to do,” Kuo tells The Creators Project.
The legends effectively transform the artist’s brushstrokes into representations of a diverse array of feelings and questions that are entirely different depending on where they are located in the work. In Cues (9/23/16), pink marks in the left-hand quadrant of the work embody the question, “Is haunting our enemies frowned upon?” while marks of the same color in the right-hand portion of the canvas ask, “Could our parents be pre-parental versions of themselves?” The sets of inquiries and explorations are different in each work, falling under varying groupings, expressing human musings like Things I’d Love to Know and What I’m Actually Saying When I’m Saying.