Xuan-Hui Ng: Interludes

6 NOVEMBER 2021 - 8 JANUARY 2022

Foto Relevance is pleased to present Interludes, the gallery's debut solo exhibition of works by Xuan-Hui Ng. The Singaporean, Tokyo-based artist's serendipitous landscapes capture transient moments of beauty within the vastness of nature. Propelled to begin creating art as a way to seek solace from loss, the artistʼs desire to preserve this fleeting beauty mirrors a desire to preserve precious memories in the same manner. These quiet scenes offer a shared sense of tranquility to the viewer, an invitation to be part of a deeply personal moment, and a universal appreciation of the world we live in.

 

  • ‘Life is beautiful’, someone once told me. I finally understood what he meant when I was sitting by the edge of Lake Namtso in Tibet. All the negative thoughts that held my mind hostage for months were crowded out by its beauty. I realized how tiny I was, relative to this universe. There’s so much beauty on earth, so much to live for and to explore.

     

    Grief made me look inwards but discovering nature rekindled that spark of life in me, enabling me to look outwards again. I got over myself. I found hope.

     

    Xuan-Hui Ng

  • The images in Interludes are captured in the beautiful Japanese countryside where the artist retreats to seek refuge from the chaos of the world and inspiration from the bounty of nature. Ng photographs ephemeral moments — the changing seasons, the rolling fog, the swirls of cherry blossoms in water, known as hana ikada, as they fall after their short bloom. Some of the phenomena she captures are becoming increasingly rare as the earth's climate warms, making the moments that much more precious. One such phenomenon which appears in her work is diamond dust, tiny ice crystals suspended above the earth in a low hanging cloud which sparkle in the sunlight. Another is yuki-mushi, or snow bugs — known as the harbingers of snow, the fluffy white bugs resemble a light dusting of snow themselves, and the first snow of the season often falls one to two weeks after they are sighted. It is almost fantastical to imagine that these are anything but dreamscapes, and yet they are entirely unaltered images.

  • XUAN-HUI NG, METAMORPHOSIS #21, 2020
  • Ng's creative process is tied intimately to music, and the visual compositions echo a symphony of nature. Her images are inspired by the music of Italian composer Luca Longobardi, whose work investigates the relationship between sound and spectacle. Often using his music as a means to focus her mind while photographing, the deep connection between Ng's visual language and Longobardi's work is apparent in the emotional response carefully rendered by each.

  • XUAN-HUI NG, METAMORPHOSIS #16, 2019 XUAN-HUI NG, METAMORPHOSIS #16, 2019
  • Xuan-Hui Ng's work seeks to find a sense of personal perspective in the vastness of nature, to reach acceptance through...
    XUAN-HUI NG, REMEMBRANCE #4, 2019

    Xuan-Hui Ng's work seeks to find a sense of personal perspective in the vastness of nature, to reach acceptance through release, to look outward as a means of looking inward. Her images transcend cultural experience, facilitating unique emotional encounters through the eyes of each viewer.

  • ABOUT THE ARTIST

     

    Xuan-Hui Ng is a photographic artist from Singapore who currently resides in Tokyo. Rooted in her own experiences of turning to the landscape as a source of comfort and respite, Ngʼs images reflect a thoughtful kinship with the natural world. She has become a widely exhibited artist in addition to placing at the 16th Julia Margaret Cameron Award for Women Photographers in 2021. Publications her work has been featured in include What Will You Remember? and fotoMAGAZIN.

     

    ARTIST STATEMENT: The beginning

    ‘Life is beautiful’, someone once told me. I finally understood what he meant when I was sitting by the edge of Lake Namtso in Tibet. All the negative thoughts that held my mind hostage for months were crowded out by its beauty. I realized how tiny I was, relative to this universe. There’s so much beauty on earth, so much to live for and to explore.

     

    Grief made me look inwards but discovering nature rekindled that spark of life in me, enabling me to look outwards again. I got over myself. I found hope.

     

    The present

    Initially, the urge to photograph stemmed from an almost desperate desire to preserve those precious moments of nature and prolong the serenity they brought. Overtime, I began to enjoy simply being immersed in nature, marveling at its beauty and being grateful for being able to witness yet another magical moment.

     

    Life is beautiful. I dedicate these tokens of memories to kindred spirits, the weary, the lost and the lonesome. I hope that you too can experience the joy I felt when I laid my eyes on these magical landscapes.