Singapore-based Gajah Gallery is delighted to announce its participation at Art Basel Hong Kong 2019, featuring an outstanding line-up of the latest works from some of the most prominent contemporary artists based in Southeast Asia: Ashley Bickerton, Erizal As, Jigger Cruz, Li Jin, Mangu Putra, Rudi Mantofani, Suzann Victor and Yunizar.
Alongside this, the gallery will feature in the specially curated Kabinett sector – showcasing the works of Bagyi Aung Soe, the father of Burmese modern art. Working primarily in illustration, Aung Soe eschewed the commodification of art as an elitist luxury, instead aspiring to be a politically and socially conscious cartoonist. His incarnation of the archetype of the tortured, impoverished genius, alongside his pursuit of an art removed from market concerns and allied with spiritual transformation, earned him both the derision of Myanmar’s authorities and the respect of the country’s foremost intellectuals.
Bagyi Aung Soe (Myanmar) is regarded as the trailblazer of modern Burmese art. Trained under Nandalal Bose at Rabindranath Tagore’s University of Visva-Bharati at Santiniketan in India, Aung Soe’s practice melded traditional Asian art forms, Western modernism and ancient spirituality. A solo exhibition will be dedicated to the artist at the Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Pompidou (France) in 2020.
Ashley Bickerton (USA) is among the most well-known expatriate artists, residing in Bali for almost 25 years. His work is in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, The Guggenheim and the Whitney Museum in New York, the Tate Gallery in London and the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam. Ashley is known for his unique social commentary, drawing from an anthropological perspective of looking at consumerism, the cross-pollination of culture and the widespread decay of humanistic values.
Erizal As (Indonesia) is a rising Indonesian artist, whose first solo exhibition in Singapore has catapulted the painter into the spotlight, drawing the attention of regional and international collectors. His ‘Faceless’ series seeks to capture the disparity between proclaimed and perceived identities of political or ideological authorities.
Jigger Cruz (Philippines) explores the primitive memory of the figurative in contemporary painting. His artistic approach plays with the ideas of defacement and vandalization, reworking many of the stylistic quirks and formal concerns of classical painting. The artist debuts new bronzes, created in collaboration with Yogya Art Lab, showcasing an intuitive rawness and strong sense of tangibility.
Li Jin (China) is one of China’s foremost contemporary artists, known for his lighthearted approach to the otherwise stoic field of Chinese ink painting, illustrating a philosophy of liberation and contentment. The characters that appear in his paintings are drawn from his daily life, and his travels through China and Bali, Indonesia.
Mangu Putra (Indonesia) is renowned for his paintings of wilderness, mountains, waters and fish, and other forms of nature – appearing true-to-life yet also strangely artificial and overly idealistic. The artist’s vision of the world is not a natural one, but rather a version contaminated by society; a commentary on humanity’s effect on the natural environment.
Rudi Mantofani (Indonesia) is one of Indonesia’s most acclaimed artists, whose works are well-known for their thought-provoking experimentations with realism and absurdity. By manipulating mundane objects, the artist opens up their potential and reveals new ways of seeing through irony and illusion.
Suzann Victor (Singapore) is a pioneering figure in Singaporean art history, and perhaps the city-state’s most notable contemporary female artist, being exhibited at Singapore’s National Museums and the 49th Venice Biennale. Her latest body of work, premiered at Gajah last year, presents religious iconography covered in crushed stained glass, endowing the sculptures with an ethereal quality, transforming the surface to reach the viewer as a prayer of light.
Yunizar (Indonesia) continually proves his massive appeal to international audiences, enchanting collectors and curators all over the world. His work reflects an ideal of imaginative and authentic expression, using a combination of primitive markings and elementary forms to create a universal visual language.