In My Story V – A Symbolist’s Witness, each painting is dominated by a fantastical machine or cyborg, which assumes the shape of an animal, a building or a vehicle of transportation within which the artist sits, or is sheathed in. The machines occasionally appear rusty and in need of maintenance (a reference to the artist’s own aging and ailments), but in this series may appear rejuvenated because of the appearance of his young daughter, or the portrayal of himself as a young boy in a new icon throughout the series, as opposed to his bespectacled adult self in the past. Animals where present (sheep, wolf) now appear more organically integrated with cybernetic electrical circuitry, rather than being composed of the usual metallic plates as in the past. Sheep and lambs are prevalent motifs, representing either Christ as the sacrificial Lamb of God, or Christians who are led by Christ the shepherd.
Much of the symbolism in Classical Western painting is underpinned by origins in the Christian faith, however the imageries that arise from Shih Yaw’s brush spring very much from his imagination, with little owing to classical canons of codes and conventions. The stories are less a narration of the actual events and episodes in previous series and more an encapsulation of general themes such as friendship or the artist’s daughter, intricate Christian messages, and aspects of the artist’s attitudes, emotional states or behavior, in relation to God who observes his failings and provides forgiveness and encouragement in turn.
Venue: ION Art Gallery Level 4 ION Orchard, 2 Orchard Turn, Singapore 238801
When: 19 - 28 Dec 2014, 10am - 10pm
By: Utterly Art