Art Talk

Vincent Leong: You Are Here
By Swee Chin PAN

8 PM

It was a well attended opening. When I got there at 8.15 PM, there was already quite a crowd. Besides family, friends and arts enthusiasts, there were a number of students milling around too. Some of them were on their own and there were several little groups too. The presence of these students was quite a puzzle as Vincent does not teach anywhere. My guess is that they wanted to see Vincent’s works which have been described as ‘provocative, humorous and analytical’.
I was first introduced to Vincent’s work at Gallery Petronas in December 2007 where The Independence Project, a group show featuring Malaysian and Australian artists was held. 2007 was also the year Vincent had his last two solo exhibitions, namely The Exhibition That Was, Valentine Willie Fine Art (Project Room), Kuala Lumpur and Tropical Paradise, Sculpture Square, Singapore. So this solo is long overdue.

Vincent and his parents
He has been busy though with several group shows, both locally and abroad, and he was a resident artist of the Koganecho Baazar in Yokohama in 2009. It is always so beneficial to be able to spend some time in another country, to experience a different culture – it does make you grow in all sorts of ways.

 Vincent with Farewell to Format

As usual, the artist must pose with his favourite piece and here is Vincent with Farewell to Format, an installation of ten light boxes showing reflections of turned off TV screens. These TVs were located in domestic and public interior spaces – such a clever idea! The photo below was taken towards the end of the evening, so Vincent’s bow tie is undone, but he is dashing no less!

Vincent with Keeping Up With The Abdullahs 1
I like Keeping Up With The Abdullahs, two digitally aged photographs which recreate historical portrait photography. You will see strange objects being included in the photographs – I am not going to tell you what they are – go see for yourself...And the story behind these photographs go much deeper…

Bonnie De Souza & Amir Shariff

Hafizah, Vincent & Jiji Ishak

Kung Beng Hong, Valentine & Jimmy Phoon

Liza, Oon Soon & Chantal Claudel

Executive Properties is another interesting series. They are photographic collages of abandoned spaces which Vincent found in Kuala Lumpur. These spaces were then juxtaposed with views of famous places and landmarks, such as Putrajaya and the clock of the Sultan Abdul Samad Building, which have been inserted into the windows and open spaces in the background of each photograph – brilliant!

Mahani Lee & Brian Lariche

Malik Taufiq, Chong Siew Ying & Adeline Ooi
There is much, much more in this exhibition than what has been mentioned above. Vincent’s works are varied and cover a wide range of subject matters. There are videos, objects, graphics and participatory work. Did I mention that I like meLayu too? Go check it out!

Nizam Shariff & Hadrien Maur

Shao Loong, Eva & Jun Kit

 Shirley Leong & Robin Ng
Vincent Leong: You Are Here features at VWFA Kuala Lumpur from the 13 June – 7 July 2012.
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