Event: MEAA Winners Showcase Date: 20-31 October 2021 Time: 11am to 8pm Venue: White Box, MAP@Publika Admission: Free The Malaysian Emerging Artist Award (MEAA) Winners Showcase 2021 features the works of five young artists who received the award in 2019. They are, Faizal Yunus, Fazrin Abd Rahman, Syed Fakaruddin, Hafizuddin Azman, and Aiman Zamri. In addition to receiving cash prizes, vouchers for art materials, and a ten-day travel grant to a to a city within the Southeast Asia region, the recipients of the award are promised a Winners Showcase which will then be followed by each artist’s respective solo exhibitions. The travel grant awarded to the MEAA 2019 recipients brought them to Manila, where they were exposed to the people, culture, and art of the vibrant city. The hope was that their time in a new environment, would impact and influence their practice in some form of manner. Thus, following their return to KL in 2019, they were required to develop a series of works that would feature in the MEAA Winners Showcase. Synopsis In 2020, The World Health Organisation declared the outbreak of COVID-19 a pandemic, and so the circumstances this exhibition has changed since 2019. This ordeal resulted in a series of lockdowns and heavy restrictions that sent the world into a dizzying state of uncertainty and disarray. How does this translate to the Winners Showcase? One would imagine that their individual characters, as well as the outcome of their narratives for this exhibition would have been influenced by the trials and tribulations brought on by the last two years. The story behind the journey of every artwork to the wall is as significant as their outcome. While the impact of the pandemic may differ from one artist to the other, the conditions in which these works were developed are a testament to their vigour and spirit. Undeniably, each artist possesses their own unique style and voice; yet, what they hold in common is their profound sensitivity to information. For instance, Faizal Yunus’ series encapsulates the journey of his experience during the first lockdown. Meanwhile, Fazrin Abd Rahman and Syed Fakaruddin’s respective body of works draws from the memories and stories of their trip to Manila. On the other hand, Hafizuddin Azman’s paintings expresses his account of the political turmoil faced by the people of his hometown growing up. Last but not least, Aiman Zamri’s series illustrates a reality constructed by his imagination as a result of being alone. Each have drawn inspiration from specific events that have left a lasting impression on their perspectives. In essence, be it stories or experiences, it is evident that they are highly receptive and responsive to information. Emerging from lockdown with the rest of the country, these five awardees come forth to present their narratives to the audience. Having persevered through the tough times, we hope that their display of resilience will inspire a sense of continuity in the role of young artists in our industry. Undeniably, the young artists today have made it thus far from the path paved by their forerunners, and now they can build upon the foundation and the unity that was established by our senior artists and art professionals. Thus, this exhibition is a testament to that; it not only celebrates the success and the potential of some our most promising talents, but it showcases the result and product of a community that has helped nurture and shape the young talents of the industry. Essentially, a sense of community is important, as there is strength in numbers. Now is as good as a time to unite and bring our unique traits and assets to reinstate the local art industry to be stronger than ever. #malaysianemergingartistaward #MEAA #houseofmatahati #mapkl #publika #UEMSunrise #art #artmalaysia
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