Small Wonder
25 Nov, 2009 - 23 Jan, 2010 | 10 Chancery Lane Gallery

10 Chancery Lane Gallery presents the exhibition SMALL WONDER by Simon Birch.

Hong Kong, 16 November 2009 — Hong Kong based, British-born artist, Simon Birch, continues his exploration of painting the human in his new series of energized canvasses in the exhibition, SMALL WONDER.  The series focuses on female figures alternating between movement and quiet pensive moments and studies the concepts of duality of the human condition under life-threatening circumstances.  

Birch challenges the notions of facing one’s mortality as both a frightening and liberating experience.  In his new series of paintings he creates an oscillating response of hope and hopelessness that emerge from within.  The subjects of his works struggle, twist, turn and hide, avoiding confrontation and connection with the viewer.  Certain works, at the same time, have an ethereal feeling of lightness that lends an uplifting and optimistic quality. Through the raw honesty of nude figures Birch brings the characters to the forefront of our human connection.  Facing the somewhat crude, unprocessed and natural state of the naked body makes the audience come face-to-face with our common humanity and our very real situations in life.

Although most works evade the viewer, their unrestrained poses allow us to equate ourselves to an intense emotional experience.  Most of the works explore movement through his use of liberating brushstrokes allowing the characters to fly in motion.  The movement is unrestrained and the figures seem to be breaking out of the confines of some certain doom.

In this exhibition, Birch will launch his first limited edition print, Meteor, in aid of the Hong Kong Cancer Fund.  Sally Lo, chairman of the Hong Kong Cancer Fund, said:  "As a cancer survivor, Simon is an inspiration to others, proving that cancer is not the end, but the start of a new way of life.  Simon's personal journey led to a profound transformation in the way he paints, showcased by his bold and rapid brushstrokes.  By letting go of life's rules; Simon has blossomed into a truly amazing artist.   We're grateful to have the on-going support and friendship of such a remarkable person." 

Simon Birch was born in the English Midlands and is of Armenian and Polish descent.  He moved to Hong Kong in 1997 and is known for his highly-stylized, energetic, figurative paintings and portraits.  He works in different art mediums to include video, performance, installation and sculpture combining his personal identity with his urban art experience.  He has exhibited at the Nanyang Academy Museum in Singapore, the Hong Kong Museum of Art and is now working on a large multi-media project at the 20,000 square-foot ArtisTree space this spring in Hong Kong.