“Memories are alive, like a life-form incubated inside of me. When I recall something, it blossoms inside of me.”
– Joanne Pang
Yavuz Gallery Singapore is pleased to present Before the Birth of Eden, a solo exhibition by Joanne Pang that inaugurates her representation with the gallery. Exploring the becoming of life in relation to the act of recollection, the exhibition features new paintings and sculptural works that expand on her ongoing interest in memory, structure and materiality.
Eden, the garden of earthly paradise believed to be inhabited by the first man and woman, is referenced as a starting point to question the (pre)transient grounds of the human condition. Pang probes into the porosity and creation of memory and life by staging fluid dialogues, through her use of contrasting mediums while embracing spontaneity— negotiating the force of gravity with the artist’s language of abstraction.
Pang works with stains, trapping paint with plastic, spilling colours and forms on the hard and impenetrable surface of aluminium and acrylic panels, to reflect a sense of transformation in matter and being. Her interest in using materiality as an image-making vocabulary can also be seen in the use of oil versus water-based mediums, and thin washes versus impasto. In the large-scale painting “Garden of Eden”, the blossoming of life against the cyclic nature of time is evoked in the articulation of organic gestures and repetitive drags of bitumen strokes.
In the series “Memory Folders”, mixed media wall works resemble storage units, serving as an archive to movements of time and space examining notions on the physicality and impermanence of memory. The notion of seeing through ‘rose-tinted glasses’ is literally expounded – coloured plexiglass partially obscures its background, casting a feeling of warmth and nostalgia to underlying signs.
Floral and fauna impressions housed within circular metal panels also characterise the show, expressing the circularity of time as a fertile paradigm that incubates and rejuvenates. Hints of femininity are echoed in the recurring motif of the Vesica Piscis, seen across several paintings and in the sculpture “Fertile Ground”; a provocative work exploring sexuality.
As a mother-to-be, Before the Birth of Eden, lends a glimpse to Pang’s current dwellings on the poetics of life and its creative force; beyond our unyielding penchant for control and free will, and how we are irrevocably a part of nature’s penetrative touch and flow.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Joanne Pang (b. 1986, Singapore) explores the relationships between memory, structure and materiality through site-specific installations, paintings and drawings. Pang holds a MFA from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Art, Denmark and a BFA in Visual Communication from Nanyang Technological University School of Art, Design and Media, Singapore. She is currently a lecturer at LASALLE College of the Arts, Singapore. She has participated in exhibitions across Singapore, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Russia, United Kingdom, at institutions such as the National Museum of Singapore, Substation (Singapore) and Institute of Contemporary Art (Singapore). She is the recipient of several prizes such as: the coveted 2018 UOB Painting of the Year, Gold Award, Established Artist Category (Singapore) for the painting Slash ; the 2012 Singapore Young Photography Award, Body-them category for her photographic series Breath; and the Singapore Design Awards, 2012, Gold Award for the publication Several Islands.