Published 01 March 2019
Published 01 December 2018
Efforts to save the ancient city of Hanoi from redevelopment - an Australian businessman raises money and support
3 major influences. Nguyen Sang (1923-1988) painted in a politically charged and nationalistic mode but always as a personal expression. Bui Xuan Phai (1920 - 1988) painted small streetscapes depicting the soul of old Hanoi, a nostalgic view. Nguyen Tu Nghiem (1922-) was more innovative looking again at ancient village sculpture in pagodas and paradoxically moves closer to a Modernist style.
Published December 1993
Curtin University developed ties with Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand since its foundation in the sixties, initially through Engineering and Business and then through the Design School spearheaded by artist-lecturers Nola Farman, Paum Gaunt and Head of Design John Teschendorff. Frequent visits and exchanges and enrolling Asian students have all helped the School of Art there to identify as a South East Asian art school.
Indonesian printmaking emerged around the time of Independence in 1945. It began to be taught in colleges in Bandung, Yogyakarta and Jakarta and became a way of showing Indonesian art abroad. Prints are now seen in offices, banks, hotels and homes. Indonesian printmakers have participated in international print exhibitions in Norway, Taiwan, and Japan.
Artist Joan Grounds describes the experience of her first residency in Thailand in 1989. Her lack of knowledge of Thai culture and language and having to operate in a climate where open critical debate about art or other topics was not possible were some of the challenges she faced. Since then she has returned four times to make art works in Thailand and witnessed the rapid changes which occurred over the period including a greater willingness to discuss issues.
The massacre of pro-democracy students in May 1992 was a watershed for Thai artists who began to identify with change, formed associations and took part in rallies, and called for public monuments to the tragedy. The City Art League was formed to present performance art in public places and the Concrete House to draw attention to AIDS through art activities. This brought social and political issues into the realm of art.
Thawan Duchanee is a successful Thai artist whose studies abroad helped him to create a new Thai art which is a hybrid of western and eastern ideas. He set up a museum in Chiang Rai to promote all the contemporary Thai arts and has funded many scholarships. He was a resident artist at the University of Melbourne April-May 1993 where he created a huge painting as well as an 'Oz' version of his Thai homes using various elements as votives to nature.
Thai-Australian Cultural Space was an exhibition at the Bangkok National Gallery in 1993 of works by Montien Boonma, Vichoke Mukdamanee and Kamol Phaosavasdi from Thailand and Joan Grounds and Noelene Lucas from Australia, all of whom had experience of working in countries other than their own. A common theme of the work was our relationship to nature and the spiritual in art and life.
As a Director of the School of Fine Art at Silpakorn University, Somporn Rodboon has been instrumental in helping students get an international perspective. She invited Australian women eg Joan Grounds, Noelene Lucas, to be artists-in-residence. Diane Mantzaris arrived in 1992 and made a suite of contentious computer generated prints dealing with the May anti-democracy military crackdown.
Why has Yogyakarta produced a school of surrealist painters and what do they paint about? Life perhaps offers strange encounters, especially in the meeting of eastern and western elements,but the clue is in traditional attitudes to the ghostly or uncanny. These are transposed into scenes of modern life which are richly varied and powerful. They include one of Indonesia's only woman artists, Lucia Hartini.
Vietnam has a long and diverse cultural history with strong sculptural traditions of Dong Son and Cham ethnic groups. At various times artists went to Europe to study and French art was a strong influence. In the north a socialist realist mode flowered in the 60s and 'formalism' was repudiated. Printmaking and political posters were strong during the war. Now painting flourishes; in Hanoi 'the village' is an inspiration, in Saigon various western styles are seen.
From 1989 - 1991 artist Neil Roberts found himself engaged on a series of working visits to the Philippines. He decided to use only local materials, striking a welcome chord with his hosts. His tendency towards sparse presentation was in sharp contrast to the overload of the installations and paintings of local artists, echoing the contrast between Australian and Filipino attitudes to space. At ARX in Perth he collaborated with Cesare Syjuco who has the ART-LAB space in Manila.
An overview of the history of Malaysian modernism and the work of three artists who rebelled against their Islamic-style training at the Institute of Teknologi Mara. Riaz Jamil Ahmad, Ahmad Shukri Elias and Tengku Sabri. Riaz and Ahmad paint in a neo-expressionist figurative mode, Tengku makes carved wood sculptures which have echoes of old Malay motifs. After some years of dissent the three have adopted a stratgic self-imposed culture of silence.