THE art scene in Yangon (Rangoon), Burma has been developing quietly despite the other struggles the nation has faced. Many of the galleries in the city reflect work from artists that have effectively portrayed some of the rich culture, religion, landscapes and colours of Burma. There are a number of very talented artists that feature in galleries across the city. And as art is always a wonderful way to understand any country you travel to, here are five galleries to include in your next sojourn to Yangon.
Managed by New Zealander Gill Pattison, the classy River Gallery in the colonial era Strand Hotel portrays over 30 local artists of varying styles. Some of these are established artists and others are just starting to gain acclaim. Pattison organises exhibitions both at the hotel and abroad with a desired end of showcasing select artists to the local and international community both within and outside the country’s borders.
Strand Hotel Annex, 92 Strand Rd, Yangon. Tel: (951) 243377/8/9 ext. 1821
Inya Art Gallery
The 64-year-old Aung Myint set up the Inya Gallery by the lake of the same name in his garage in 1989 to feature both his work and other artists of a similar abstract theme. Aung Myint’s work has featured in collections all across Asia from Singapore to Japan, Thailand and Singapore and also other western nations. Mostly bold and colourful the works seem to reflect much of his positive attitude for the future of the nation.
No. 50 (B), Inya Road, Kamayut Township, Yangon. Tel: (95-1) 524818, 524327.
New Treasure Art Gallery
The New Treasure Art Gallery is owned by Min Wae Aung who is renowned for his stylised images of Buddhist monks from behind. So good are the detailed paintings they look almost like photographs and have generated a lot of international interest and acclaim. He is possibly one of Burma’s best known artists and captures much of the essence of the country with its spiritual and traditional dimensions. Ten other artists established the New Treasure Art Gallery with Min Wae Aung. They aim to help more young artists and other people interested in painting.
No. 84 (A), Than Lwin Road, Golden Hill Avenue, Golden Valley, Bahan Township, Yangon. Tel: (95-1) 526776
New Zero Art Space
This nonprofit gallery and art school in downtown Yangon was designed with an attempt to provide spaces for modern and new media art works in Yangon and to allow Burmese arts a chance to meet and share ideas. They run an artist-in-residence program when they have the funds, which allows their artists to engage with international artists. Go along to their exhibitions and art spaces to support contemporary art at its very beginning in Burma/Myanmar.
Art Space: No.54(1-E),Bo Yar Nyunt St. Dagon Tsp,Yangon.
Art Studio: Room 202, United condo, Alanpya Pagodar Road, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel: (+) 01 73129520.
Anawmar Gallery of Art
The Anawmar Gallery features a collection of famous Burmese artists and boasts some 200 paintings, some of which date back to the early 20th Century. The gallery was established by Nay Myo Say whose work features in one room of the gallery, although they are more contemporary mixing contemporary and abstract features.
18A Thukhawaddy Road, Sooniram Park, Yankin township.