Graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts at The University of the Arts London – Chelsea College of Arts, Joanne Chan shared her reflections on how emotions impact her art creation, how she dealt with the most challenging time, and the concept and message of her last exhibition.
- Can you tell us about your background?
I’m a Hong Kong-based artist who mainly focuses on painting and sculpture creation. After finishing my secondary school education in Hong Kong, I moved to England to study art.
When I first started my art journey, I was deeply obsessed with finding the meaning of life. I always wanted to explore the questions like why was I born and what is my purpose on earth, etc. And these types of questions and thinking about the world and the universe became my inspirations when I first started to work on my art pieces.
- What do you want to influence as an artist?
My abstract paintings are my emotional landscape. My paintings are like movies, recording all my ups and downs emotions, and I wanted to share them with my audiences in an art form. If it’s possible to send a message to my audiences, I want to say that we are only human. We all have feelings, and we should be grateful to feel our emotions. By accepting all the different types of emotions within us, we will eventually find our own way to express and get through it. This journey never stops unless we give up.
- What major challenge did you face?
My grandmother passed away in March this year, and I have been experiencing a really tough emotional period since then. I was the I-have-it-all-together person, and I did not have time for anything that slowed me down; I simply kept pushing myself to the limit. I only focused on sharing the bright side through my arts in the past. I thought showing positive energy and love was the way to make the world better – at least to make my world better.
However, the loss of my family member was too overwhelming for me, and there was a period I was so grief that even couldn’t do any art creation. It gave me a sharp warning – I had to be honest to myself. So I drew my blue collection paintings to express my feelings.
In the lesson I learned from my grandma’s death, I realised that it is unnecessary to fake fine. It is okay to be sad and allow myself to sit with the sadness and feel it without affecting others. It is absolutely fine to take a break from the hustle and to feel the sadness when it flows through me. I dealt with my emotions to connect to my inner self, allow myself to heal over time and enjoy the moments of joy and happiness when it comes to me naturally. Life is short, I want to live it from the inside out. It’s the first thing I can do to be responsible for myself in my life.
- What inspires you and which inspiration sources do you use?
Emotions, feelings, and observing the details of daily life are my inspiration sources. I tend to create art spontaneously in a natural way.
- Can you share the concept of your last exhibition?
The last exhibition was the duo exhibition hosted by Soluna Fine Art, and the title of the exhibition was “Between Us.” This exhibition aimed to shine a light on the contradistinguish of the abstracted landscape and still life paintings created between two female artists from different backgrounds and cultures that can speak and express the same visual language and concept.
This exhibition brought another perspective to me. The concept of “between us” also represented the “in-between” period back then when I didn’t have a clear direction. It also represented the change in my state of mind, allowing me to experience the range of emotions that flew through me.
- How do photography and other art forms work together and influence each other?
I think photography is a form of creative medium. Since it is a medium, everyone can use it for different purposes. For example, some people may take photos for documentation; some may use photos to submit their school assignments; some may capture historical moments. I think photography works like a paintbrush; it all depends on how one uses the tool (photography) to create their art and express their feelings.
Joanne Chan BIO:
Graduated from the University of the Arts London – Chelsea College of Arts, Joanne Chan (b. 1992, Hong Kong), through mindfulness practices, creates abstract paintings that traverse between energy, subconsciousness, and creation. Just as the essence of abstract art, of which artists utilise colours and forms to create an interpretive and metaphysical dialogue with viewers, With works showcased in local and international exhibitions in Hong Kong, China, Singapore, and England, Joanne is one of the emerging artists in Hong Kong that continues to gain momentum and establish a reputation in both local and international art scenes.
Please visit https://www.joannechan.hk/ for Joanne Chan’s updates and her work.