Rural Scenes in Dazzling Textures and Colors

By Wei Yan Aung 26 July 2018

When it comes to paintings of rural life, typically, ox-driven carts, paddy fields, and damsels who fetch water from a creek in the evening come to mind.

But in the paintings of rural landscapes by Thurein at his sixth solo exhibition “BOBA Village,” viewers only see the rough brushwork of black lines and dazzling colors.

“I’ve reduced the form of a village. I didn’t even sketch tree shade in my paintings. I didn’t clearly depict the landscapes so that viewers could enjoy and imagine, as they like. My works were based on texture, color and line,” said Thurein, the photographer-cum-painter.

The exhibition is the second of his rural village series; the first one was showcased in 2008. The scenes he depicts exist in the real world.

They are from the village of his grandparents in Yangon’s Kyauktan Township, where he has visited frequently since he was young.

The paintings feature his childhood memories of the village as well as recent developments.  He used various colors in his paintings, and viewers can enjoy the artistry in his brushwork and use of texture.

“The village has changed a lot; it has not thrived but is on the decline,” said Thurein, whose artistry is largely influenced by American modernists Franz Kline, Mark Rothko, and Barnett Newman.

Thurein has held his exhibitions at home and abroad including Singapore, Thailand, Korea, Vietnam and the United States.

Twenty paintings are on display at the BOBA Village (II) exhibition, and his works are available for $800 each. The exhibition will be held through Sunday at Nawaday Tharlar Art Gallery.

“I curated this exhibition because I like his paintings. His feelings about the village attracted me more than his expression of it. His works depend more on his feelings, I think,” said Ko Pyae Wai, the owner of Nawaday Tharlar Art Gallery.