Flower Pepper Gallery is pleased to present, Where Have You Been, A Solo Show by Po Yan Leung. Few artists are able to create work that is so genuinely rooted in optimism that it is contagious. Po Yan Leung’s work is seemingly simple at first, but therein lies its magic. There is an undeniable sense of innocence in each piece that is almost enviable. Her work makes you want to return to the days of making walkie-talkies from tin cans, or going on afternoon adventures with friends. Simpler days when the littlest joys were enough to bring us the greatest amounts of happiness.
Po Yan Leung is greatly inspired by nature, which is evident in pieces like “A Walk.” At first glance, we see a vibrant red house amidst an illustrative forest that is whimsically escaping the sides of the wood panel. Looking closer, a familiar fairytale scene is unfolding as a wolf slowly approaches a girl in a red hood. As she interacts with some playful pups surrounding her, other woodland animals can sense something is about to happen. We like to think we know how this story ends, but with Po’s cheerful style, this paused moment might reveal itself in an entirely new way. It makes us feel like children again, holding our breath to know what happens next.
In her piece “The Dreamer,” we see a very different scene. Delightfully dressed people appear to be making a commute, all towards the same direction. Dressed in various shades of blue we can sense their thoughts full of to-do lists amidst the mindless hustle and bustle. However, in the bottom of the piece, we see a lone figure dressed in bright red, walking against the crowd, with a hat and a backpack. Self-assured and seemingly free of worries, he looks like he is setting out for an adventure and of all the people in the painting, he makes us want to go with him.
All of her pieces elicit a sense of joy that is almost difficult to describe. In “Lunch Time” we see a woman dressed in vibrant red, holding a bag of cat food high above her head labeled “cat nom.” Leaping towards her is a sea of cats and their sense of urgency is something any animal lover can relate to and see the hilarity in. Other pieces, such as “Little Hunters” reminds us of the days spent outside making memories with friends. This group of adventurers are exploring and catching frogs. Equipped with flashlights, we sense the delight and surprise upon seeing the little creatures, peeking out from the bog.
Immensely relatable and full of fun, Po Yan Leung reminds us to look for the joy in life. She reminds us not to take life too seriously and to look with the eyes of a child, full of wonder and optimism. Her work is endlessly uplifting with an entrancing call to get lost in our imagination and set out for an adventure.