Nina Fowler, Oh Sujin, Craig Wylie
9 Feb - 4 Mar 2012
Contemporary by Angela Li is proud to present “Face Value: Nina Fowler, Oh Sujin, Craig Wylie”, an exhibition which brings together three international artists including BP Portrait Award First Prize winner Craig Wylie, British artist Nina Fowler and Korean artist Oh Sujin to Hong Kong for the first time.
Craig Wylie was born in Zimbabwe in 1973 and graduated with a distinction with a BFA degree from Rhodes University, South Africa. He moved to London in 1998 where he later won prizes in two consecutive years for the Young Artist Award from the Royal Institute of Oil Painters. He then went on to win the First Prize of the prestigious BP Portrait Award in 2008. Through a process of rigorous painterly investigation of his own studio photographs of people he knows, Wylie’s paintings become something different, something altogether more organic and human. “I believe in the transformative power of paint. That it still has the capacity to move people, to breakdown temporal normality and extend the senses beyond the picture plane, to thoroughly intoxicate the viewer and bring them back to reality enriched.”
Nina Fowler was born in 1981 in the UK and graduated with a degree in Fine Art from Brighton University. In 2008, she was nominated for the BP Portrait Award and participated in shows at the National Portrait Gallery and exhibitions throughout Europe. Fowler’s works play with Hollywood’s golden age of glamour, exploring the gap between fantasy and reality. She takes celluloid icons of Hollywood, frozen in a still and reproduces the image meticulously in pencil and graphite, instilling within them a troubling quality by injecting fragility and glamour. All of her works are hung from nails which penetrate through metal eyelets in the paper. This has 2 become a regular style of presentation for the artist as it gives further sculptural presence to the drawings and allows them to breathe and move as paper will. It also highlights the brutal nature of the subject matter, which is never far from discussing mortality and the underlying scent of tragedy.
Korean artist Oh Sujin obtained a BFA degree from the prestigious Hongik University in Seoul in 2009. She currently lives and works in Seoul, Korea. Oh’s art looks at the world with a sure and steady gaze. She turns her attention to faces chosen for how they reflect our time and presents them in pieces executed with artistic and expressive skill guided by a brilliant technique. Selected from websites and magazines, Oh’s portrait subjects have no connection to her. The artist explains, “Mass media is our only connection. My portraits are not conceived from a particular aesthetic point of view. Rather, they are inspired by something that grabs my attention, a main concern, a powerful image. Still, if they do have an underlying aesthetic, it lies in the process of moving an image from its place of origin into one of my portraits. In this sense, I think they are similar to Richard Prince’s ‘re-photograph’ technique.”