Pearl Lam Galleries is delighted to announce its participation in the 2017 edition of Art Stage Singapore, taking place from 12–15 January. As one of Asia’s leading galleries, with spaces in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Shanghai, Pearl Lam Galleries will present a range of international contemporary artists at stand A8. The Galleries will also be participating in this year’s Southeast Asia Forum, a platform to discuss current global issues through the lens of contemporary art, at the fair.
This year’s forum, titled “Net Present Value: Art, Capital, Future”, seeks to explore the values of art, imagination, and progress, along with issues related to conducting business in a global capitalist system. The Galleries will be presenting two specially selected works by Jenny Holzer (b. 1950, USA) and Yudi Sulistyo (b. 1972, Indonesia). Best known for her large-scale public installations of texts influenced by literature, society, and politics, Holzer will present Truisms: Money Creates Taste, a white marble bench with the Chinese translation of the phrase engraved on its seat. Dealing with the darker side of capitalism, Yudi Sulistyo will present Out of Control, an imposing life-sized model of a damaged militaristic aircraft.
Furthering its mission of promoting cross-cultural dialogue within and beyond Asia, the Galleries will be exhibiting the works of leading contemporary artists across the globe at its main stand, including works by Pepai Jangala Carroll (b. 1950, Australia), Chun Kwang Young (b. 1944, South Korea), Dale Frank (b. 1959, Australia), Gonkar Gyatso, (b. 1961, Tibet), Li Tianbing (b. 1974, China), Jason Martin (b. 1970, a British artist born in the Channel Islands), Antony Micallef (b. 1975, UK), Gatot Pujiarto (b. 1970, Indonesia), Qian Jiahua (b. 1987, China), Bosco Sodi (b. 1970, Mexico), Su Xiaobai (b. 1949, China), Yudi Sulistyo (b. 1972, Indonesia), Sinta Tantra (b. 1979, a Balinese-British artist born in the USA), Zhou Yangming (b. 1971, China) and Zhu Jinshi (b. 1954, China).
British artist Antony Micallef will be presenting a work from his Raw Intent series that explores the mechanics of paint and its potential to express emotions. Known for his visually charged paintings, Micallef’s works feature a distorted figure of thickly layered paint in front a muted background. Though initially guided by his own face in the mirror, his works are not meant to be read as portraiture. The face only acts as a conduit for exploring the hidden potential of the medium.
Inspired by uncommon events and unexpected occurrences from collected stories and his own personal experiences, Malang-based artist Gatot Pujiarto manipulates textiles and magazine cuttings by tearing, pasting, braiding, and stitching his materials. Unlike his usual darkly humorous caricatures, West Track (Jalur Barat) draws upon his personal memories scaling Mount Semeru with his friends. Reflecting on his experience as he created the work, Pujiarto muses at our insignificance amidst the majestic creations of God.
Chinese artist Li Tianbing also draws inspiration from real life in his new series of works, dealing with the social violence prevalent in society, resulting from the greater polarisation between the rich and poor. He is interested in representing the moment where the physical conflict is at its height, where the scene becomes a visual blur and is almost fragmented or even abstract in painted appearance.
Yudi Sulistyo’s dioramas entitled No Man’s Land continue this exploration of the destructive nature of humanity with his desolate, dystopic landscapes.
British artist Jason Martin is best known for his monochromatic paintings, where layers of oil or acrylic gel are dragged across hard surfaces, such as aluminium, stainless steel, or Plexiglas, with a fine, comb-like piece of metal or board in one movement. As the striations catch the light, their rhythmic textures appear suggestive of the ridges in a vinyl record, sleeked strands of wet hair, the grain of a feather, or the folds of silk sheets.
Australian artist Dale Frank challenges the notions of painting through his biomorphic works, creating hypnotic surfaces through his radical experimentations on the painted surface. Using the universal languages of colour, tone, and rhythm to engage with the viewer on a purely instinctual level, Frank subconsciously enlists his viewers as participants in his ongoing investigation of the potentiality of paint and surface. Frank’s singular vision combined with his masterly manipulation of the painted surface make his stunningly evocative chromatic compositions hypnotically beautiful, but also cerebrally engaging.
Gonkar Gyatso’s work is born out of a fascination with material and pop culture, along with a desire to bring equal attention to the mundane as well as the extraordinary, the imminent, and the superfluous. Shangri-La combines Gyatso’s interest in signage and iconography, as well as his desire to preserve and celebrate his own culture. Gyatso’s use of Buddhist imagery, together with his appropriation of icons from pop culture, forms his humorous take on the mythical Himalayan utopia.
Focused primarily on ideas of line and space, Chinese artist Zhou Yangming creates his intricate surfaces by drawing and painting line upon line in a meditative process that reveals great discipline of both the hand and mind.
Known for her paintings of structures that possess rigid accuracy but musical cadence, Chinese artist Qian Jiahua will be presenting a triptych at the stand. Her work resembles buildings as colour, lines, and planes interact and support one another, evoking a sense of architectural balance and harmony. The sense of mathematic rigour and precision helps to construct striking visual orders that create new experiences of visual perception for the viewer.
British-based Indonesian artist Sinta Tantra is similarly engaged with the relationship between painting and architecture. The artist examines the divide between the second and third dimensions; her paintings define the two dimensions clearly, yet also find endless ways of distorting it. A bold and vibrant palette inspired by her Balinese heritage is typical of Tantra’s works, merging pop and formalism, colour and rhythm, East and West, as well as identity and aesthetics.
Presenting his works with the Galleries for the first time, Aboriginal artist Pepai Jangala Carroll draws from the magic of the earth in his paintings. With intricate patterns and layer upon layer of colours, Carroll constructs his interpretations of the landscapes of his country.
Known for his richly textured, large-scale paintings, Mexican artist Bosco Sodi taps on the emotive power within the essential crudeness of the materials he uses. Like Carroll, he is interested in the relationship between humans and the land; his dried earth works are reminiscent of parched deserts, forgotten lava, and scorched dirt, yet they contain a colourful magic to them that alludes to opportunities for spiritual transcendence.
The Galleries will also showcase a new work from Korean artist Chun Kwang Young’s Aggregation series, which combines his early experimentations with Abstract Expressionism with his mastery of mulberry paper, a uniquely Korean material, in his search for a culturally authentic mode of artistic expression. Wrapping individual triangular pieces of polystyrene in hand-dyed mulberry paper, Chun creates the highly textured surfaces of his mesmerising wall-hung assemblages.
Other highlights of the stand include the works of important Chinese artists Zhu Jinshi and Su Xiaobai. Su Xiaobai is one of China’s most distinctive painters, whose works straddle sculpture and painting. His works focus on essential qualities like colour, shape, and texture, which in various combinations produce unique surfaces, ranging from smooth and sensuous to carved and abraded, with each piece exuding its own history, character, and independent presence. Following a successful solo exhibition that opened the new Pearl Lam Galleries Dempsey Hill space, the stand will feature four of Su’s larger works in muted, monochromatic tones.
Zhu Jinshi is one of the pioneers of Chinese abstract and installation art. The Galleries will present a selection of the artist’s works characterised by a thick layering of paint that gives his wall-hung works a three-dimensional, sculptural effect.