Ross Liew

Ross Liew

Ross Liew (b. 1978) is the receiver of an Asia New Zealand Foundation grant and will be staying in Rimbun Dahan for three months from mid-April to mid-July.

I am a New zealander of Chinese and European ancestry. My grandfather’s story provides the entry point to this residency project which involves the exploration of Serdang/Seri Kambangan and Belakong and my family’s presence and activity there over the last 80 years. Serdang village and the site of the family orchid farm in Balakong have been substantially developed over the years and many relatives have now died or moved away. Within my family’s history there are themes of cultural and personal dislocation, forced resettlement and immigration. These themes presence and impact on my family history are key points of reference as I build a project specific to Kuala Lumpur and the Rimbun Dahan residency.

Learn more about Ross and his works at his instagram.

Nicholas Choong

Nicholas Choong

A go-to conceptual artist for agencies and brands like MRT Gamuda, Uber Malaysia, Tiger Beer, restaurants as well as Accounting & PR Firms in Malaysia – Nicholas Choong is no stranger to the visual arts and design world.

He studied watercolors under a mentor at the age of 13 and when he was 16 he learnt Graphic Design and Photography working as a Production Assistant in the film industry.

By the time he was 19, Nicky (a moniker he goes by sometimes) was already working in the events, music & entertainment industry. The next 17 years of his life was spent working and raising a family before he began painting again in 2011. In 2014 he helped shape (and was the first artist in residence for) the sembilan Art Residency Programme in Seremban. During that time he also mentored under Wei Ling Gallery and has continued to exhibit his work in group and solo shows up till this day.

In 2015 he opened his own studio, Satu Arts and continued to perfect his craft. Nicky also dabbled in installations and collaborative mural projects. In 2016, he began his foray into video production and has since then worked as a director, Art Director and Creative Director in the media and corporate world. In his traditional paintings, Nicholas works in a series based format and is known for his strong ink and line work.

During my residency at Rimbun Dahan I’d like to explore the relationships between the environment (source materials) and mediums available to me (video, photography, paintings) and create a body of work that resonates on all levels to create a story.

Here you can find interviews he’s done/been a part of on BFM (with Jael Estrella and solo), The Star, and Chalk and Raddy. To find out more about Nick’s work, you can check his Website, Facebook, Youtube, or Instagram.

Christopher Strong

Christopher Strong

During my residency I will continue my recent practice of finding small instances of beauty in every day life and magnifying it. By limiting my focus to a tiny space, I can find shapes, forms and colours that always around me but not often the focus of me attention. Usually my subject is nature thriving within an urban environment, but sometimes I focus on food or industry.

During my residency I want a new artistic experience by letting the environment change my work, both in the subject matters that will capture my attention as I live at Rimbun Dahan and travel in Kuala Lumpur, and how the physical environment that is very different to Melbourne.

I am a self-taught visual artist, painting with oils and watercolour. See more information about me and my work at my website.

Flor Alba

Flor Alba

Mirage catcher, graduate of Geneva School of Art and Design/Haute Ecole d’Art et de Design (HEAD) in 2012, Flor Alba draws and paints according to her aesthetic inclinations and contemplative imagination. Zig-zag wanderings. Surveying the contradictions of beauty, she feels the surface of humans, then dissects them. She works with oil paints, water colours, embroidery, pencil, and greasy chalk.

Neo-fauvistic chromatic surgery. Engulfed in pure and violent colors, forms sometimes blend into a cluster of graphic ornaments and unexpected scenography. Yet beings remain in the foreground, stripped of their earthly envelopes, letting go of the memories of past gestures: fragments of ancestral stories. The culture of ethnic rituals is the heart of her creative quest. She seeks to own pieces of life, objects and rites of no fixed origins, reinterpreting her own story in that mirror. She questions others, expanding civilizations, what is foreign to us and seems strange to us, as a way to question her own origins.

Flor’s artistic references are:

  • Matisse for his colours and repetitions
  • Gauguin for his freedom in colour
  • Lynette Yadom-Boakye for her portaits
  • Satsuki Shibuya for her abstract lightness
  • Marta Riniker-Radich for her acid colours in her original compositions
  • Karine Rougier for her stunning scenes

Flor will be in residency at Rimbun Dahan from mid-July to mid-September 2017. Check out more of her work on her website and Instagram.

Haffendi Anuar

Haffendi Anuar

Haffendi Anuar (b. 1985, Malaysia) is an artist based in Kuala Lumpur. He works with a variety of media and disciplines such as drawing, painting, sculpture and photography. He did his International Baccalaureate certificate in fine art at the International School of Kuala Lumpur, his foundation at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence and his BA honors at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London. In between his studies, he worked as a model maker at T.R Hamzah and Yeang in KL, studied Mandarin in China, worked in an art gallery in London and Kuala Lumpur and assisted artists in studios in London (Hew Locke and Nicolas Deshayes). He has exhibited locally and abroad.

Haffendi is a multidisciplinary artist. Mining history of art, digital technology, nature and local contexts, he creates object-based works that recycle found images, objects and artistic styles from digital and local sources. He was previously at Rimbun Dahan for a one-month residency in 2015, via a collaboration with Richard Koh Fine Art. This time he will be doing a four month residency alongside fellow artist Veronika Neukirch.

Si Jie Loo

Si Jie Loo

Si Jie Loo is a multi-disciplinary artist who is interested in capturing the spirit of humanity, primarily with Chinese Ink. She graduated from Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, USA with an honors in Studio Art and has since lived and worked in both US and Malaysia. As an artist in the diaspora, she is constantly on the move between places, cultures, music genres and languages. She inks down captivating people, musicians, dancers and nature during her travels, most recently the Tibetan plateau and the Silk Road in Northeast China. She calls this body of work INKounters and further develops larger abstract paintings that convey that essence in another series INKnovations.

Her spontaneous and dynamic strokes are generated from her ever-wandering eyes and ready-to-go ink brush and paper in her pocket. Behind the scenes, she eagerly search for inspirations, whether it is from traveling, reading, calligraphy, visits at the museums and art galleries, music, drum or dance sessions, concerts, and/or art residencies.

Si Jie hopes to use this residency to ask questions such as: What’s the future of Chinese Ink Painting? If it were an important Nanyang (Southeast Asian) heritage and legacy, how can it blossom and grow beyond the Malaysian Chinese art circle? How can she innovate within a tradition that has once inspired the likes of Van Gogh and Paul Gauguin? How can she expand the medium’s limitations by collaborating with other artists of dance, music and theater background?

Southeast Asia is an exciting hub of trades and inter-cultural exchange. Its tropical colors and wide array of craft and folk arts were subjects of studies for many foreign scholars and local artists. Si Jie wishes to immerse herself at her residency at Rimbun Dahan, to share her understanding of the new and the old based on her own cultural roots that she re-discovered upon returning from abroad, thereby expanding her repertoire to a contemporary Malaysia that she and many other artists aspire to shape.

Si Jie’s work can be found online at her website. Footage of her painting processes and interviews can be found on her YouTube channel. She has also posted her residency statement of purpose in full here. Si Jie will be a resident artist at Rimbun Dahan from October to December.

Si Jie Loo with her mentor Malaysia's Chinese Ink Painting Master Dr. Cheah Thien Soong.

Si Jie Loo with her mentor Malaysia’s Chinese Ink Painting Master Dr. Cheah Thien Soong

Le Hoang Bich Phuong

Le Hoang Bich Phuong

Le Hoang Bich Phuong (b. 1984) is a visual artist based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Her art is an outlet for expression and a means to deliver her concerns regarding sexuality and eccentricity. Recently, Phuong’s focus has shifted more toward nature, time, space and social awareness in her country, Vietnam.

Even though Vietnamese culture doesn’t emphasize on individuality, I often wonder about the state of individuality in the other countries. My works are usually a blend of imagery of human sexual organs twisted into seemingly familiar distortions and contrast elements that do not seem to belong together. For me, these unlikely combinations often create the perfect piece. I have been using Vietnamese traditional silk paintings as my primary medium, but I always experiment with new mediums as it could be the new language in my art. I enjoy reflecting my thoughts on contemporary issues through art, using traditional medium and materials as a way to challenge to the dogmas of society.

To view more of Phuong’s work, visit her website. You can also view the process of making one of her works (pictures below), here on YouTube.

Azliza Ayob

Azliza Ayob

Azliza Ayob (b. 1975) is an artist who works in many mediums, such as painting, collage, and installation. Her most recent solo show was in 2014, titled All That Glitters, at Wei-Ling Contemporary in KL. She’s been working as an artist, facilitator, and educator for 15 years now (and counting), exhibiting both locally and internationally in Japan, Australia, Sweden, Madrid, and Barcelona. Azliza has also been part of Rimbun Dahan’s collaborative exhibitions with WWF, Art For Nature, multiple times in past years. Nature plays a strong part in her work and her inspirations, as seen in her initial statement of intent below:

I am preparing for the first of my autobiographical paintings in one show. I had started my ‘Adventures of Azliza Ayob’ series in 2009, while building Art History (Eastern Art) modules in a local university. While developing my research on manuscript and miniature paintings from great masters, I discovered that the missing link is to incorporate local elements which I believe can be solved if I photograph, sketch, interview and paint local plants and anything related on the function, purpose and local stories (medicinal). I want to change the function of plants from my previous paintings into a selection of the right flower/plant for the right meaning. Rimbun Dahan’s landscape is perfect for anything creative, it’s fresh, private and acts as a data bank for many leaves, plants and flowers.

Bridie Gillman

Bridie Gillman

Bridie Gillman’s practice is grounded in her experiences of living in Indonesia when she was younger and further experience of being ‘in-between’ places and cultures since. Her work explores ways in which experiences of awkwardness and the ‘unknown’ can be translated through found materials, installation and photography.

Gillman is an emerging artist based in Brisbane, Australia and completed her Bachelor of Fine Art with Honours at Queensland College of Art in 2013. Since graduating she has conducted a residency in Indonesia and exhibited nationally and internationally.

She was in residency at Hotel Penaga from August to October 2015, where she researched the transient space of hotels, tourism and souvenirs in our increasingly globalised and transnational world. Her residency culminated in an exhibition titled Round Island Tour, held at Run Amok Gallery in Georgetown. For more information on her work, visit her website.

left:  Souvenir: Tropical Fruits of Malaysia 2015, oil on canvas. right: In Thailand I got a girl in every club 2015, oil on canvas board.

left: Souvenir: Tropical Fruits of Malaysia 2015, oil on canvas. right: In Thailand I got a girl in every club 2015, oil on canvas board.

Left: Sprite at night 2015, Batik painting. Right: Local Lingo 2015, Set of 6 digitally printed postcards, edition of 100

Left: Sprite at night 2015, Batik painting. Right: Local Lingo 2015, Set of 6 digitally printed postcards, edition of 100.

Anne Austin Pearce

Anne Austin Pearce

Anne Austin Pearce was born in Lawrence, Kansas and studied art at the Kansas City Art Institute, Brighton Polytechnic and the University of Kansas. In 1993, Pearce received a full scholarship to James Madison University, where she received her MFA in drawing and painting. Her work has been recently acquired by the MDC Museum of Art and Design, Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art and the Spencer Museum. Exhibitions include Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, KS; Corcoran School of Art and Design, Washington D.C.; and the Drawing Center, New York City. Anne’s first museum show will be at MDC’s Museum of Art + Design in Miami, 2013.

Currently, Anne is a Professor at Rockhurst University and Director of Greenlease Gallery. Her work is supported by the Lighton International Artists Exchange Program and the Rockhurst University Presidential Grant.

She will be at Rimbun Dahan from middle of July to middle of August 2015, working on art for an upcoming exhibition. You can find more of her work on her website.