Today, in the Western democratic world, we live in the society where people have lost their trust in everything. This quintessentially prompted in the financial melt down that struck the world in 2008. On reflection, however, it should not have been such a surprise as we once thought it was, because it was the direct result of people’s complacency, indolence, and mischievously exercised corporate activities that overshadowed the endeavour of honest and hardworking people. This tendency has certainly crept into the context of art, and as a result, many collectors and artists are deceived and blinded by the hypes and hyperboles that do not have the ground of conviction. Valorisation of language, often referred to as logocentrism, and the paradigms in the 60s, art as text, or art as simulacra in the 70s epitomised this trend, which have led the art world to the saturation of mediocracy, justification of indolence, and the false notion of art as a mere intellectual and ideological indulgence, subordinate to philosophy and politics. How has art lost its own autonomy? Well, certainly in the lexicon of painting, authenticity, originality, skill and providing aesthetically innovative ideas and visions have been utterly disregarded and marginalised during the loosely termed post-modern era. Post-modernism was meant to deny the rise of any what is called a meta-narrative, often ideologically driven big stories, such as politically exploited religious beliefs and communism when they are exercised as dogma. Dogma kills individuality that is essential to creativity and surely in the art of producing artworks. Despite that, the utter denial of principles that our ancestors have cultivated over millennia can also lead us to disorder, entropy, and more importantly the lack of excitement, innovation and progress. Progress represents aliveness, and life itself. Life symbolises a sense of freedom and possibilities. To produce something great means to convey these essential values, and to produce something that represents these senses. What this means for artists is to invest and pour their creative force, life force and vital energy both physically and intellectually into making art, as if pouring liquid into a cup. There is no shortcut, but to work patiently and persistently in the pursuit of one’s aesthetic truth, with sincerity and conscientiousness. Hence I endeavour to create art based on my core principles and what I stand for. As a mere art lover, I would love to see qualities, such as originality, authenticity, like the artist’s handprint and touch, not that of assistants, skill, innovation, and a good feel. Unfortunately, I rarely encounter these qualities in contemporary art, therefore I am determined to strive for instilling these qualities in my art and provide them through my art.

Back to Essays Home