PO PO’S MYTH AND LOGIC
By Elizabeth Patterson
Burmese artist Po Po has always challenged the norms. From his development as an artist to his practice of performance art, of which he is widely considered the first artist in Myanmar to do so, he has always created work worth viewing. His exhibit at the Yavuz Gallery in Singapore exemplifies this. The gallery is presenting a survey of his work over the years.
Not much is known about the almost elusive Po Po. His work is spaced out among the years, including his performance art pieces. He has worked in painting, sculpture, and installation pieces. Self-taught, he gave a spotlight to the overlooked Burmese art scene with his notable performance pieces.
Out of Myth, Onto_Logical presents a variety of work from Po Po’s prolific career, including pieces from as early as 1982. The title represents the shifting mindset the artist experienced. Rather than relying on the mythological – things that are uncertain, that can’t be seen and may not have verification – he wandered into the logical – things that are definite, reasonable, and attainable. He chose to focus on the space between these two to create some of the artwork featured in the exhibit.
A notable work in this exhibit is called “Painting for the Blind”. A cream colored, oil on canvas work features nails embedded into the canvas acting as braille. There are a series of three of these paintings, each featuring different styles of “braille” that vary between raised and embedded. The works look like classic tufted headboards to the naked eye, but in the context of their name, they transform into something else entirely.
Out of Myth, Onto_Logical will be on view at the Yavuz Gallery in Singapore until September 13, 2015.