When this exhibition was first mooted at the beginning of the year, Hock-Aun was planning to travel in the Far East followed by studio time in Glasgow to produce paintings for this show.
The pandemic slammed on the brakes and a red flag was waved at two of his vital creative cogs - travel and cultural adventure. The revised challenge was to produce works that were still full of energy and optimism (a trademark) despite being deprived of these significant worldly experiences. Hock-Aun described his situation as ‘being like a wild tiger without space to roam in its natural habitat’.
Banishing all thoughts of the lost reality, his starting point is much more introspective. With a rigorous examination of mind and body, he has channelled dreams and imagined happenings into this group of small paintings using explosive colour, defining line and broad-brush calligraphy to tell his stories.
The exhibition title, 6 + 6 (Liu Liu) points to the influence of Chinese culture where numbers are special. 3 signifies the beginning of change, 4 is death, 6 good luck, 8 fortune and 9 longevity. People often greet each other by saying 'liu liu da shun - the greatest flow of smoothness be with you'. So it had to be 6 of both canvas and paper.
In 2019 Hock-Aun was afforded a solo exhibition in the country of his birth, Malaysia, at the flagship National Art Gallery, Kuala Lumpur.
This is the first time that works on paper and canvas have been exhibited together.
Hock-Aun's work has been exhibited worldwide. Public Collections include:
The National Art Gallery of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
Chinese People's Political Consultative Congress, Beijing
The Gallery of Modern Art, Glasgow
The Dick Institute, Kilmarnock Art Gallery & Museum
Edinburgh City Arts Centre, Edinburgh
Scottish Arts Council
The Bulgarian National Gallery for Foreign Art, Sofia