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Sunyoung Hwang: The Listened Landscape, at Frestonian Gallery

Date: Thursday 23 May - Saturday 22 June 2024
Frestonian Gallery | 2 Olaf Street | London W11 4BE | | [Map]

Tickets: Free | Official exhibition notice here
Tuesday to Friday: 11am - 6pm
Saturday: Noon - 4pm
Sunyoung Hwang: Sun Pillar, 2023
Sunyoung Hwang: Sun Pillar, 2023. Oil & acrylic on canvas, 170 x 200 cm. Courtesy the gallery and artist

Frestonian Gallery are delighted to present our first solo exhibition of works by Sunyoung Hwang. The densely layered yet effervescent oils on canvas that form the core of Hwang’s practice are a kind of abstract diary of mood and thought. The seemingly quickly applied, gestural brushstrokes belie a slow and meticulous process, building up of layer after layer of colour and form over weeks or months. Each subsequent layer may cover the full surface of the canvas, or be a single, energetic stroke / form.

The process of assembling the works is both measured, in the sense of the long periods of contemplation and allowance for drying time between the layers, and deeply intuitive. Each approach to the canvas – each addition, erasure or revision – comes with a different intention and thus a different effect. Subtly translucent and barely noticeable applications may relate to quiet thoughts and emotional states, whilst the bold and purposeful blocks and bars of colour that often sit on the final surface display more strident responses to mood, thought or music.

Hwang writes: As I work directly onto the canvas without preliminary sketches, drawings or photographic references, the entire process of my painting happens only on the canvas relying only on my memories through an organic process and development. My initial marks on the canvas are a starting point for a development of ideas and images for amorphous landscapes and a journey through them. Using a spontaneous, stream-of-consciousness method of composition, I overlap multitudinous layers with intuitive conceptions of time and space. This results in gestural works that feel like they have been caught in a moment – the ideas and emotions expressed can never be finished nor fully come into being, only (barely) contained by the canvas.

Notes on the artist

Sunyoung Hwang was born in 1988 in Seoul, Korea. She lives and works in London. She received her BFA in Fine Art from the Slade School of Fine Art, London (2012) and completed a MA in Painting at the Royal College of Art, London (2016).

Solo shows include: A-Lounge Gallery, Seoul; Galerie ERD, Seoul, Nunnery Gallery, London. Her work has featured recently in group shows at Sid Motion Gallery, London; Guts Gallery, London; The Address Gallery, Brescia and Saatchi Gallery, London. Hwang was longlisted for the Jackson’s Painting Prize, selected as a finalist for Young Contemporary Talent and was the winner of the prestigious Chadwell Award (2016). Residencies include the Hangar Residency at Hangar Artistic Research Centre, Lisbon and the SÍM Residency at The Association of Icelandic Visual Artists, Reykjavík.

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