Respecting Traditions, Embracing Modernity

Art Gallery Victoria is the newest addition to the growing number of art galleries that have taken up home here in Bras Basah Complex. But make no mistake, it isn’t just any art gallery.

Art Gallery Victoria prides itself as being new and different, a fusion of the east and the west. During our visit, we had the privilege to speak with the Director and Curator of Art Gallery Victoria, Mr Zhao Hong (Lloyd). As an ink artist himself, Lloyd has had a rich and extensive experience in the field of arts.

Some of his accolades include serving as the deputy secretary general of China Foundation for Cultural Heritage Conservation, the honorary director and curator of Qing Zhou Museum in China, and a member of Singapore’s National Gallery Language Panel.

Our visit during the gallery’s soft launch period coincided with Lloyd’s preparation for his solo exhibition and we had the rare opportunity to be among the first few to catch a glimpse of this artist’s masterpieces. Here we were exposed to the art of contemporary Chinese ink painting, which encompasses and respects elements from the traditional ink painting, but also infuses elements that introduce a sense of modernity.

Unlike western oil paintings and water colours, which are inclined towards presenting an accurate depiction of the world around us, Lloyd shares that Chinese painting transcends this by seeking to bring the artist’s personal interpretation of the world into life. Chinese painting is a form of personal expression and a philosophy that draws inspiration from one’s own epiphany and enlightenment.

So, do not worry if you do not have prior experience in painting. If you are interested, do take the opportunity to stop by Art Gallery Victoria and attend one of their open classes in ink painting. Most people tend to underestimate their gifts in the art, so if you give it a chance, you might just discover a flair which you never knew about!