SHOUT Art Hub and Gallery is delighted to present the inaugural exhibition To Be Found, a collection of delicate oil paintings and graphite drawings by Hong Kong emerging artist Thomas Ngan, which will run from 19 September to 17 October 2022 at IFC Mall.
We give flowers to those we love, even more so to those who have passed away. We give our best effort to dignify them, as a proper respectful send off and a continuous commemoration down the years. But it is more important for us to give flowers to those that are still with us, serving as a reminder of our love and appreciation for them. This series by Thomas Ngan is a reminder of this sort, that it would be a study on the idea of baptism - to bathe in death, and come out reborn. Afterall, who and what we are is much more than our body. Perhaps we do not have to wait until the day when our physical presence is gone for our loved ones to appreciate our souls. “When I started, I only wanted
to observe and find a place to express my appreciation for the behaviour of floral life forms and feminine beauty. They are timeless. It’s part of our nature to appreciate them. Same way babies appreciate sunset and beautiful colours, we are born to be amazed by life.”
As Thomas emerged himself in his appreciation process, he felt necessary to delve deeper into the nature of its implications. “Why do I choose the imagery? Why is it so compelling to me? Why do I want to paint them? And all these, what do they mean to me?”
Thomas discovered that with a setting like a funeral contrasting with the seemingly opposite narrative, what was alive became death, and what was dead became alive again. That's how the symbol of death became grace. In Thomas own words: “Is it a coincidence that the paintings match my beliefs? Or is it that I wanted to paint them? Or perhaps I framed what I paint into what I believe. In the end, maybe it's a little bit of everything.”
Everything an artist paints has a narrative, whether he/she is aware of it or not. Artists wish to express their deepest desires through their artworks. “That is what I teach my students. I myself cannot escape that neither and so I found out something about myself. I just wanted to be found, and dwell in that light. Perhaps I have already been found, but it's hard to stay awake.” Said Thomas.
To Be Found
Exhibition Date: 24 September – 17 October 2022
Exhibition Venue: Shop 2033, IFC Mall, 8 Financial Street, Central, Hong Kong
Opening Hours: 10:30 – 19:30 Daily
In Thomas own words, there is a purpose for every brushstroke that a good artist makes, like an orchestra of visual elements. “Artists have the responsibility to learn and observe the essence of our subjects, and express in such a way that others can better appreciate the beauty and purpose within each and every single one of us. That is our responsibility.”, said Thomas. “If one is listening carefully, one can hear every specific instrument that is being played, but at the same time the instruments should be working together as one.”
Thomas Ngan was born in 1995 in Toronto, Canada; currently lives in Hong Kong. Thomas has refined his philosophy, analytical system and practical approach toward painting. In the following years, his works became known among international artists communities, as they were often featured on various representational art pages on social media.
Regardless, he continued to destroy most of his early work as they were "only practices" to him. It was not until 2019 that he started his first series, and began saving works for this inaugural exhibition - To Be Found.