Artist Profile: Mona Choo

MULTIDISCIPLINARY ARTIST MONA CHOO USES THE SURFACE OF HER CANVASES TO CONDUCT DEEPER STUDIES INTO THE NATURE OF HUMAN PERCEPTION. ZOE ZHENG WRITES.

Mona Choo

A DRIVING FORCE behind Mona Choo’s practice has always been a fascination with the subject of consciousness. Basing her works on extensive research, the multidisciplinary artist explores the nature of human perception and what constitutes our idea of reality. Her subject matter constantly branches out from this topic to touch upon various fields of studies, including psychology, philosophy, astrology, quantum theory and sacred geometry.

“Art is the platform on which my enquiries into science and spirituality come together, often leading to more questions, provocations and discourses than answers,” she tells Art Edit. “In my practice, every stage of the creative process is an opportunity to evolve my work, so the outcome is often not by design but by evolution.”

Mona’s oeuvres are varied and diverse in medium and style, as she always searches for the most suitable form to pose a particular question. Her work from the past five years combines a layering of techniques and processes: many begin with printmaking on clear materials, which then evolve into different spatial dimensions.

By transforming drawings on flat surfaces into three-dimensional forms, experimenting with light to form shadows of drawings with infinite possibilities, and incorporating photography, Mona questions how “consciousness may exist outside of, and influence us, from beyond the dimensions that our physical bodies inhabit”.

In her recent series, Current Musings, Mona continues her enquiries into consciousness from a completely different perspective: the internal world. The sense of space disappears into wild lines and layers of paint over the canvas. Highly saturated and contrasting colours juxtapose broad swathes of black and white. Beyond a powerful visual impact, Mona opens up a deep dialogue with herself; a dialogue of inner contradictions. In these works, the conscious and the subconscious, dreams and reality, fear and confrontation, demons and angels collide.

“Looking into abstract painting is akin to finding something that has been hidden. Hidden within the colour and forms are feelings, thoughts, ideas, suggestions,” says Mona. The artist’s advice is to enjoy rather than try to make sense of them – give the mind a break and let your deep consciousness lead the way.

Before graduating from Central Saint Martins with a Master of Arts in Art and Science, Mona had already started to exhibit internationally. Her work is in permanent collections of Singapore Art Museum and the Printmaking Research Centre of Macao, and private collections of organisations and individuals in Asia, Australia, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States. Most recently, she presented in the 2018 Australian Tom Bass Prize for Figurative Sculpture finalists’ exhibition in Sydney. Mona will exhibit in Tasmania in January and in Singapore in May 2019.

Related Stories

Louise Vadasz, Cliffs Port Willunga. Oil on canvas, 60 x 50cm.

Artist Profile: Louise Vadasz

South Australian artist Louise Vadasz relies equally on experience and intuition for the creation of her bright and jagged renditions of wild seascapes.
Alison Percy, Rocky Valley Lake 1. Gouache on paper en plein air with Tasmanian oak frame, 50.8 x 61m.

Artist Profile: Alison Percy

Solo exhibitions have been stacking up for Alison Percy, whose calm paintings capture the lyricism of the natural world.
Nika P. Silva, Amuse Me. Spray paint on mountboard with collage of ink on paper, coloured paper, silk, felt, imitation bronze leaf, tracing paper, viscose and cotton thread, 50 x 70cm.

Artist Profile: Nika P. Silva

In her saturated collages of sky and earth, artist Nika P. Silva matches subjects from nature with sublime washes of supernatural colour.
Mona Choo, The Thin Veil. Archival ink on canvas, 90 x 120cm.

Artist Profile: Mona Choo

Multidisciplinary artist Mona Choo uses the surface of her canvases to conduct deeper studies into the nature of human perception.
Meg Vivers, Summer Winds. Acrylic and oil on sheet canvas, 64 x 94cm.

Artist Profile: Meg Vivers

Artist Meg Vivers talks to Art Edit about colonial women’s history, isolated cattle stations and the medium that brings the two together: painting.
Shirley Macnamara, Mugama for Country, 2018 (detail).

Artist Profile: Shirley Macnamara

The woven Spinifex sculptures of artist Shirley Macnamara are heavy with themes of resilience, survival and remembrance.

Related Artworks

Kate Bender, Into His Fiery Heart. Oil on canvas, 84 x 152cm.
Kate Bender, Only the Wind Sings