Korean Paradise - 2019 SAMA Exhibition
Longing for immortality in paradise was commonly expressed in paintings because Minhwa served as a conduit to overcome the woes of the current life with the internal strife for an after or alternate life. As such, Minhwa commonly repeats the themes of success, love, luck, adventure and posterity to not only teach and relay such beliefs and value systems but also to create visual hiding places for the beholder. Withstanding time and history, Minhwa continues to be a valuable and popular art form today, not only because it bears witness to ancient people and beliefs but also because it is essentially an honest and earnest expression of basic human desires. The pursuit of paradise continues as long as humankind exists and Minhwa will continue to mirror our desires in abstract and yet familiar ways.
The Pursuit of Happiness - 2017 SAMA exhibition
Happiness is essentially the main topic of Minhwa. Minhwa is the painting of the people - the commoners, not the professional artists. It has been one of the key elements in decorating our ancestors’ homes and the venue for the people to wish upon their dreams and happiness to come true. The motifs and animals painted in Minhwa are believed to not only keep the evil spirits away, but also bring in good luck and happiness.
Although our lifestyle has changed dramatically from the time when Minhwa was first painted a few hundred years ago, the attitude of pursuing happiness through this colourful and naive styled folk art still remains the same. 10 SAMA artists have poured their passion and energy into the hanji canvas and sublimate the wish of happiness into beautiful arts.
2016 & 2015
© SAMA // Singapore Association of Minhwa Art