Portraits of Paradox
Yau Bee Ling

Yau Bee Ling holds her first solo exhibition ‘Portraits of Paradox’at Wei-Ling Gallery, after an illustrious career spanning nearly thirteen years. Born in Klang in 1972, she studied painting at the Malaysian Institute of Art(MIA),graduating in 1995.Since then she has exhibited her works extensively both locally and abroad, and is a well-known artist on the Malaysian art scene.

Yau Bee Ling is well-known for her vibrant, expressive works that revolve around the subject of family issues, which are executed in a colourful, layering on/scrapping back, oil paint process which has now become synonymous with her. Over the years, Bee Ling has constantly remained dedicated to the development of her artistic journey and this exhibition displays just one aspect of the many important phases that her work has gone through over the years.

The new paintings reveal a new level of maturity in the way Bee Ling approaches her works-which in part has to do with the changes she experienced on a personal level. In 2006 she became a mother for the first time and had to learn how to juggle life as an artist, wife and mother. ‘Portraits of Paradox’ revolve around the artist’s struggle with the superficiality of human relationships and communication, where sincerity and honesty are non-existent values. The paintings are multi-layered in more ways than one, with the portraits of people emulating that of a photograph, where everyone appears at ease with one another, yet beneath that calm façade lies a web of unresolved issues, deceit, and jealousy. In her bid to avoid co-existing within this hypocritical grouping she finds herself alone, yet when caught up in it she finds herself bound and claustrophobic. This series of works seek to express her real feelings and thoughts, for in her struggle to communicate effectively to those around her, the only way for her ‘voice’ to be heard is through these paintings.

Yau Bee Ling’s works have attracted attention overseas and she has been invited to exhibit her works in Japan, Singapore and Bangladesh. Her works were included in the 2nd Fukuoka Triennale in 2002 and were exhibited at the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Japan. In 2004, her paintings travelled to the Hokkaido Museum of Contemporary Art as part of the “Soul of Asia: Fukuoka Asian Art Museum Collection” exhibition and in 2005, she was awarded the Rimbun Dahan, Malaysian – Australian Artist-in-Residence programme. Her works have been collected by the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Japan and Galeri Petronas, Malaysia.