Contemporary Burmese Art: Ideas and Ideals

New York Open Center Inc
22 E 30th St, New York, NY 10016(212) 219-2527

February 6-9 2010

The New York Open Center announces a contemporary art exhibition focusing on the talent and creative motivations of the Burmese diaspora.  In a show organized and curated by the artists themselves, “Contemporary Burmese Art: Ideas and Ideals” will explore the modern landscape in which Burmese diaspora artists find themselves today.  The artwork, and their creators, will bridge the gap between tradition and creativity, between one homeland and another.  A roster of sixteen Burmese artists from across the United States have come together to jump-start a dialogue on creativity, censorship, tradition, modernity, “stranger-hood,” identity, and the irreverent boundary-shattering power of art.  “Contemporary Burmese Art: Ideas & Ideals” will delve into the complexity of the Burmese creative spirit while examining what it means to be a Burmese artist in the U.S.  Drawing from a rich and nostalgic tradition, how do these artists define their creative identities and as artists in limbo, between one homeland and another, what are their values and their inspirations?

One of the show’s artists, Chaw Ei Thein reveals that “Burmese artists used to do self-censorship on ourselves whenever we create our art while we were in Burma to show the public.  The question becomes, are we continuing this self-censorship once away from Burma?  Do we change, adapt, or remain the same.  During this exhibition, can an audience see or feel the sensitivity to this dilemma through our artwork?”

Join Burmese artists and the Open Center February 6th through February 9th 2010 as they take a view into this creative diaspora and contemplate the ideas and ideals that breathe life into Burmese contemporary art today.

Co-organised and exhibit catalogue copy written by Saw Sandi Tun