Roselina Hung's exuberant creativity comes alive in "Myth and Men"
After years of dancing around the edges of Vancouver’s established galleries, Roselina Hung is on the inside. Her paintings have been shown throughout Canada and in Europe, and now they are making an appearance at Initial Gallery on Granville Street. And what a grand appearance it is.
The paintings in Of Myth and Men are thoughtful and thought-provoking. Exuberantly creative, they depict dreamlike, fantastical stories by combining images of memory and Greek and ancient mythology. In subject matter, they are similar to some works of American painter Cy Twombly but Vancouver artist Hung adds a feminist, contemporary, and post-modern edge.
Hung’s technical abilities are impeccable. She has a delicate hand, a sophisticated understanding of colour and design, and a keen eye for pattern and precise detail. Exposing canvas or wood panel, slashing space in diagonals, exaggerating the rolling motion of stormy skies are just a few techniques she uses to enhance the drama in her paintings.
The paintings contain vibrant interplays between flattened spaces, such as furniture in silhouette and 1970s flower and stripe patterns, and more classical, nearly photographic, renderings of animal heads, and human faces and bodies. Her colour palette is also complex. She incorporates a wide range of color, but most lovingly seems to embrace blue. The sky blues are lush and vibrant whether the sky is stormy, clear or starry.
The paintings’ titles hint at their depth and mash-up of culturally diverse themes and timeless concerns – “Between Serendipity and Happenstance,” “The Gravity of Venus, and ” “Medusa and Her Mortal Sisters.”
“Liger, Liger (Chimera),” shows Hung’s skill at teasing the viewer’s eye. A feline mask face rests over a woman’s face, their eyes set just slightly one above the other. This causes the viewer to look restlessly for a focus.