LAM WONG

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BIOGRAPHY

“My art practice is a life long journey of spiritual exploration and discoveries. For me, painting is a vehicle for investigating the mind. I am interested in challenging the received notion of perception: how we construct meaning, the working of memory, and how human consciousness relates to the world. I want to create a discourse about the human condition, and make paintings that engage viewers in questioning existence, and finding freedom.”

Lam Wong, born in 1968, to an artistic family (calligrapher father and pianist mother) in Xiamen, China, grew up in Hong Kong during the 1980s and immigrated to Canada at the age of 19. Lam studied design, art history and painting, both in Alberta and British Columbia. He is currently practicing painting as his main medium. Lam sees art making as an on-going spiritual practice. His main subjects are the perception of reality, the meaning of art, and the relationships between time, memory and space. Lam lives and works in Vancouver, Canada since 1998.

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For enquiries or to schedule a studio visit, please contact:

Lam Wong
21 E Pender St.
Vancouver BC
V6A 1S9
+1.604.924.9384

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Lam Wong: Mind Transition

Canton-sardine
268 Keefer St. Unit-071 Lower-ground, Vancouver BC
Jan 12 to Mar 23, 2019
Opening Reception: Jan 12 (Sat. 3pm)

 

About the series Transitional 2x4:

A series of diptych paintings, each showing a fixed frame and depicting motion figures paired with a monochromatic colour-field counter part. Behind each piece of artwork is a hidden painting that is permanently mounted. They are created with layers of calligraphy and paint, drawing from a famous concept in the Diamond Sutra: The Buddha’s teaching on the impermanent and empty nature of all phenomena. The hidden paintings are both talismanic and abstract in nature. Below are the original texts that have been used in the hidden paintings:

一切有為法 如夢幻泡影
如露亦如電 應作如是觀

All conditioned phenomena
Are like dreams, illusions, bubbles, and shadows,
Like dew and like lightning;
One should contemplate them in this way.
(English Translation)

The Transitional 2x4 series was formed with a realization of a single thought - "Everything and every situation happens only once." All experience is unique. It is a quiet contemplation on time and impermanence. The frame of each painting symbolizes Nowness, and the content (the walking figures inside the frame) depict the movement in time – an expression of Impermanence in all forms and colours. Like an ever-flowing river, the walking figures seem to transition into other frames in a mysterious way. I like the idea of my paintings having conversations with each other.

My newer paintings are very often inspired by my older works. The idea of the undercover hidden paintings and the pairing of two paintings on each panel may come from my earlier work, a large diptych called Westcoast (MOA) 2008, which feature two Buddhist monks on the left panel and a same-sex couple on the right. The setting was the Museum of Anthropology at UBC in Vancouver British Columbia. The aesthetics of this new series, upon revisiting them after completion, feels like a subconscious extension of two of my earlier paintings titled 1964 The Poignancy of Music, and 1964 The Poignancy of Poetry, set in Mark Rothko's studio in Soho, NYC which I painted between 2010 to 2012. They are the projected ideal of how painting should be made, and what should be felt.

 

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Painting Exhibition / Lam Wong: 21 Elements / Sept 2-27, 2014

The exhibition features Lam Wong’s oil paintings from between 2006 and 2014. The main theme of this body of work is to explore the relationship between the art objects and their viewers. He invites you into his internal investigations on the mysteries of memory and perception within his paintings, and hopes to delve into the deeper meanings behind the process of creating art.

The opening reception is on Sunday, Sept 7th, 2-4pm. Everyone is welcome. Admission is Free. Hope to see you there.

The Arts Council Gallery is located in scenic Queen’s Park, New Westminster, annexed to the Centennial Lodge. Entrance at 1st Street and 3rd Avenue or McBride Boulevard at 6th Avenue. Gallery Hours: 1 to 5pm, closed Mondays. Free Admission.

Tel. (604) 525-3244 www.artscouncilnewwest.org

Download the Show Catalogue in pdf