Alvin Ong

I see the figures in my paintings often as extensions of myself. Recently, many of them appear quite dreamy, introspective, and restless.

—  Alvin Ong about his practice on The Here and There Collective


Image 1: Old Town, 2020
Image 2: Quarantine, 2020

What comes to mind in looking at Alvin’s work is one of space - not just in the physical space in which his figures exist, but also in the environments themselves. Through his experience living in both London and Singapore, in and out of lockdown, Alvin’s paintings depict a sense of “rootless” as he calls it, wherein his figures exist in spaces that recall both East and West, of being tightly wound in one or blissfully open in another. Clues are presented through sizzling woks and cobblestone streets, but the central focus stays with Alvin’s figures who remain preoccupied with their own existence.

In Murmuration, part of a series of works, Alvin takes a more intimate approach in casting the figure out of a defined setting. Instead, it is within the figure itself that viewers must draw their own conclusions, leaving us to find a place and time for them to exist through our own interrogation. 


Dondang Sayang, 2020

Y — A — 2020