It has been just a little over a year when I first met the really cool bunch of people from The Studio @ KL during a corporate team building event. Time just flew past as fast as a stroke of the brush and since then, I’ve been witnessing the extraordinary growth and progress of this undisputed champion of the culture of art jamming in Malaysia.
12 months forward, The Studio @ KL is proud to launch its first ever art exhibition titled “No Boundary” at the Seni Art Gallery, Mont Kiara, featuring the works of its students who have completed their “Adult Artist Class” painting course. Each class lasts for 3 hours with 4 available time slots over a week to cater to one’s convenience. I was present to photo document the event on a short notice and I must say, it’s been a fantastic experience.
Boasting over 50 students who have completed the course, art jamming at The Studio @ KL is truly a multi cultural experience with students who hail from Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand to UK, US, France, Switzerland and Austria. Under the guidance of an experienced and highly qualified professional art teacher cum artist, participants will be taught to work with oil or acrylic paint. All painting materials including a stretched canvas will be provided and participants will be able to bring home their completed works.
KL has been blessed with more art exhibitions in recent years due to its increasingly maturing and rapidly evolving Art scene. The “No Boundary” art exhibition is truly an exhibition with a twist – a showcase of the works of common KL residents themselves, unlike most exhibitions who feature works of trained, famous and established artists. The fact that these exhibition-worthy pieces are the works of students who’ve never painted before nor even remotely entertained the thought of dabbling with brush painting speaks volume.
The Studio @ KL, located at Publika, Mont Kiara opened its doors for the public to paint in April 2010. Their open, friendly and engaging approach has reaped dividends for these artists who were given an opportunity to take part in their very own first joint exhibition. “No Boundary” certainly lived up to its name and reflected the ethos of The Studio @ KL – regular people have talent and given the right environment and impetus, that talent can be harnessed on the canvas.
The thinking that “I cannot paint” should be no boundary to one’s creative talent. No one should be dismissive of their hidden abilities at the canvas and as this exhibition clearly showed; you wouldn’t know until you try it.
This “Everyone can paint” concept was wonderfully demonstrated in spades at the exhibition as the adult students proudly admired their work with family and friends amidst gasps of awe-struck approvals. I too was very impressed with these art works and couldn’t help imagining that these were the works of regular folks!
The Studio @ KL is truly a place for regular KL-ites who just want to paint – not just for the firmly established globe trotting professional artist. “We firmly believe in the creative side that lies within each one of us. Sometimes people just need a little push to unlock this hidden gem. A lot of our students initially walk in nervous and shy, not believing they have what it takes to create a piece of Art. We strive to make all our students relax and provide them a warm and conducive environment to paint,” Jennifer Tan, founder of The Studio @ KL says. It is this outlook that has made The Studio @ KL a resounding success – people picking up a brush and giving it a go. After all, what does one have to lose?
“No Boundary” art exhibition is a testament to the students’ talent. Most are homemakers and young professionals who paint in their spare time. What they have produced is truly incredible and remarkable beyond words. It is a very prolific showcase as students paint what they wish to as opposed to an imposed or set prescribed program. “These students’ achievement should serve as an encouragement to us all. Banish all self doubt, step up to the palette and enjoy!” Jennifer says.
The very much well received launch event which saw an overwhelming turnout of about a 100 odd guests started at 8.00 pm and ended at 10.30pm. The large crowd of family and friends mingled among themselves, chatting and laughing to good wine and simply delectable finger food, while other visitors glided from one painting to another, quietly admiring the works of art.
I love drawing, sketching and colouring when I was little. I’ve painted using water colour but have never done so on a canvas. This exhibition has really impacted my view of painting as a highly rewarding art form, both socially and emotionally. It’s a very hands-on approach to articulating your thoughts and creative vision on a blank work space.
The tactile feedback of interaction with a stretched canvas, the smell of freshly mixed acrylic paint and variations of a brush’s pressure points and strokes all contribute to a highly relaxing but engaging session of free-flowing orchestration of a colourful vision-to-creation endeavour. It’s certainly a very therapeutic and intimate attempt at connecting with one’s present, past and the future. The possibilities of a resulting piece are thus endless with such unbridled creative force at play.
Most of these exhibited works are produced based on pictorial references (i.e. painting while referring to a picture). I’m amazed to see the wide range of resulting images produced by the students, from abstract art and people to scenery and a slice of life, or even bizarre representations of a faint memory of a different life experience.
Seen here below are some of the artists with their painting(s).
If you are interested in taking up the “Adult Art Class” or doing a one off “Art Jamming” session, or even remotely toying with the wonderful idea of getting your hands dirty with colour, then I strongly suggest that you visit The Studio @ KL to get a good grasp of the various services on offer. You won’t be disappointed, if you keep an open mind that is.
The “No Boundary” art exhibition is currently showing at the Seni Art Gallery, Changkat Duta Kiara, Mont Kiara, KL 50480 from the 16 May 2013 to 29 May 2013.