THE PLEASURE FACTORY
Progressing from Cornucopia in Victoria Park, I decided to move to a cooler pallet of colours along with more bodies, but with the same frenetic energy. What resulted was a darker sexual overtone that pervaded the canvas. I filled out all sides of the canvas and incorporated images that were more physically and sexually charged. Again, I wanted to maintain a high level of distortion and ambiguity, yet allow spatial compression of foreground to background. The Pleasure Factory reminds me of the days partying at raves both here in Hong Kong and abroad, where shirtless men danced and cavorted.
CORNUCOPIA IN VICTORIA PARK
Following the painting ‘Garden of Earthly Delights’, I decided to work on another piece integrating figurative elements into the painting, but with more fragmentation and layering. What resulted was a painting with more bodies and figures than initially intended, perhaps more from an unconsciously effort on my part. I determined that I did not want the male bodies to be very obvious, so that one would need to search for them, and that the layering would create movement and abstraction. I did not want things to be too obvious, leaving the observer with more questions and curiosity than answers.
GARDEN OF EARTHLY DELIGHTS | Much of my recent investigations into painting have been influenced by the idea of gesture, brushwork and ways of application onto the surface, while at the same time beginning to introduce figurative elements onto the canvas. I am interested in the additive elements and layering, while revealing some parts and blurring others. I found that nudes or the male figure/anatomy to be my primary focus. I am inspired by the abstract expressionist artists of De Kooning and also by the wonderful Cecily Brown. Someone mentioned it resembled Arshile Gorky’s work, which I was unfamiliar with. In this painting, I utilised a projector and images I collected over time to draw together the idea of my own ‘garden’ of youthful men in a fantasy setting.
UNTITLED (SELF-PORTRAIT) | The journey of this painting took nearly a month of indecision and searching. As a result, I destroyed one painting in the process after 3 white washes of one canvas; thereby starting over completely. One friend to whom I mentioned this to said that was very courageous. I thought so too, but only because I felt no guilt or anger from the fresh start. Process. No feelings of discontent or anger. Just let it be. The new canvas proved to be the right thing to do. I could feel the surface of the canvas again; and how it would inform me of it’s need to be felt. More….
ODE TO NEW YORK SERIES | These painting surfaced shortly after my trip back from New York City, a place I had not visited in over 15 years. The city left me energised and excited to return back back to my own studio and canvas, to explore and reveal to me, territories of painting and investigation that I had previously missed. The multitude of galleries I visited were plenty, yet I seemingly extracted valuable components from the visit. As of this writing, I have posted only 2 paintings here, OTNY 1 and 2. I am sure there are more forthcoming. (14 Oct 2016)