WLG Incubator Young Artists Show 2023

Wei-Ling Gallery is pleased to announce our next exhibition, ‘WLG Incubator Young Artists Show 2023’ featuring Malaysian artists Alicia Lau and Khabir Roslan.

The WLG Incubator is an initiative by Wei-Ling Galleries that was launched as a platform to highlight and collaborate on projects with emerging Malaysian artists. It is dedicated to help artists create a sustainable art practice, which allows them to develop their confidence towards making art that is authentic, experimental and progressive. Through this Incubator, we hope to discover and nurture artists and projects, which are critical towards shaping the voice of the next generation.

For this 2023 edition, the selected two artists were mentored by prominent Malaysian artist Yau Bee Ling.

Bee Ling remarks, “It is a privilege to mentor such talented artists, who will be the voices of tomorrow. Alicia and Roslan are fully committed to their art, in spite and despite of personal adversities. It is my hope that they will persevere, and bloom into the artists they are destined to become.”

Alicia Lau’s ‘Diary of a Journey’ is an autobiographical journal stemmed from a recent life-altering experience. Diagnosed with Stage 3 Nasopharyngeal Cancer, what followed was an emotional roller coaster ride of “isolation”, of pressure and tension, a hiatus from work, and repeated visits to the hospital.

During my convalescence, I often related to things which surrounded me. The one object that fascinates is my elastic hair rubber band. It was like a spring. Elastic, yet snapped into two ends when it was pulled. It was similar to my own trauma, that act of absorbing ‘hurt’ and bouncing back. After much soul-searching, I decided to forego chemotherapy/ Radiotherapy, and chose a holistic approach, much to the chagrin of my doctors. I began to “speak” to the cells invading my body, I was gently taught to see them as beautiful entities.

Alicia elucidates further, “The materials used, from rubber hair grips to metal clothing pins, carvings out of tree branches and x-ray scans are self-portraits. The arrangement of the stainless steel clips for my work, ‘WE’ looks organised and controlled, but when observed from another angle, they appear haphazard. When you look at this sculpture from the side, there is a ventilation gap formed between the structure. They are all holding on to each other, the clips and my inner-self. Every thing in life is connected – a web that culminates into a cohesive support-system.” 

Khabir Roslan’s ‘Inter-Connectivity’ is a conceptual interpretation of interrelationships using soil and other seemingly-ordinary materials as metaphors inspired by his understanding of Physics and ‘Nusantara’ (Archipelago) Cosmology. 

In Physics, the notion of ‘entanglement’ (inter-connectivity) refers to atomic and molecular structures, which very much involves geometry. This can be seen (for example) in the molecular constitutions of honeycombs and H2O, the chemical symbol for water. Carbon, the primary component of life on Earth forms hexagonal bonds. It is in our DNA. My works   are allegories for ‘the act of binding together’ and ‘forming a solid, strong yet flexible root of our social fabric’. The scope of my work is deeply embedded in the idea that soil becomes a common denominator that binds us all to the Motherland, the ‘Akar Bumi’ (Root of the Earth) which shows what being human is about – we are intrinsically linked because of our ability to love and empathise.

Alicia Lau and Khabir Roslan both give audiences haunting evocations and relevancy to our vexed times; these are profound and insightful thoughts by young minds possessing ‘old’ souls. In ‘Diary of a Journey’ and ‘Inter-Connectivity’, they take us into remarkable labyrinths which expose their vulnerabilities, their hopes, faith, incertitudes and sorrows while softly saying, “This is me. I am here. Remember.”

‘WLG Incubator Young Artists Show 2023’ is featured at Wei-Ling Contemporary from 8th February – 4th March 2023.

Wei-Ling Contemporary is located at 2nd Floor, Wei-Ling Gallery Annexe, No 8, Jalan Scott, Brickfields, 50470 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Admission hours are Tuesday – Friday 10am – 6pm, Saturday 10am – 5pm.

Exhibition is open by appointment only. For appointments and further assistance, please contact +60322601106 or e-mail siewboon@weiling-gallery.com