February 26, 2021

Lockdown Art: Yangon’s Stunning Art Galleries Online

Self-isolation due to COVID-19 means most of us are stuck at home in fluffy pink slippers, with no sense of cultural stimulation. There is one quick solution, visiting Yangon’s vibrant contemporary art galleries online which provide access to the work of Myanmar artists. While these galleries physically closed, there are some that have an online presence, with images of contemporary Myanmar art that can be enjoyed from home.

Private visits to see the artworks in the gallery may be possible – contact the gallery by email to find out if that is possible.

1. Myanm/Art gallery

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© Richie Htet – The Wrestler (Myanm/Art)
© Richie Htet – Dream of the Flower Eating Demon (Myanm/Art)

The gallery represents about 10 young Myanmar artists under 40 years of age including Bart Was Not Here, Richie Htet and Soe Yu Nwe. [LINK TO https://www.myanmore.com/2020/02/pioneering-ceramics-artist-soe-yu-nwe-to-explore-concept-of-identity-at-myanm-art/ ] Exhibitions of group work cover a range of artistic styles and media including installations, ceramics, photography, textiles and collage works.

This gallery was established by Nathalie Johnston who was interviewed by Myanmore last year.

Address: G-42, Urban Asia Centre, 48th Street, Middle Block, Botataung Township, Yangon
Director : nathalie.johnston@gmail.com
Gallery Manager : minchitp@gmail.com
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/MyanmarArtEvolution/
Instagram : @myanmart
Twitter : @myanmart

2. River Gallery

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© Chuu Wai Nyein – Meet Me Where The Wild Things Grow (River Gallery)
© Than Kyaw Htay – Silent Moves (River Gallery)
© Zaw Win Pe – The Natural Features (River Gallery)

This gallery exhibits over 50 leading and emerging artists, who work in watercolor, acrylic and oil painting in different styles and subjects, such as figurative, landscape and abstract works. The website shows a range of artworks by each artist, including Zaw Win Pe, Than Kyaw Htay and Chuu Wai Nyein. The artists have produced short videos about their daily activities during these difficult times, which can be viewed at YouTube and at: What are River Gallery artists doing during Covid-19?

Address: No. 33/35, 37th and 38th street, (beside The Strand Hotel) Kyauktada Township, Yangon
Email: rivergalleryart@gmail.com
Facebook : @rivergallerymyanmar
Instagram : @rivergallerymyanmar

3. Lokanat Gallery

The Lokanat Gallery exhibits artists who paint in a realist tradition and other artists and sculptors creating contemporary art. This pioneering gallery was established as a co-operative in 1971. The gallery is in the Sofaer Building, which is a Yangon Heritage Trust landmark building.

Address: No.62, 1st floor, corner of Merchant Road and Pansodan Road, Kyauktada Township, Yangon
Email: lokanat.art.gallery@gmail.com
Web: http://lokanatgalleries.com/
Facebook : @LokanatGalleries

4. New Treasure Gallery

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Credit: © Min Wae Aung – Look (New Treasure Art Gallery)
Credit: © Min Wae Aung – Return Home (New Treasure Art Gallery)

This gallery was established by Min Wai Aung, who has built his reputation as an artist for his stunning paintings and watercolors of Buddhist monks and landscapes. Many other artists exhibit their paintings of landscapes and figurative art at the gallery.

Adress: No. 84 A, Than Lwin Street, Golden Valley, Bahan Township, Yangon
Web: https://www.newtreasureartgallery.com/
Facebook : @newtreasureartgallery
Instagram : @newtreasureartgallery

5. Pansodan Gallery

This gallery was established by Aung Soe Min. It exhibits a small group of artists who work in acrylic and oil paintings of figurative, landscape and abstract works.

Address: No. 286, 1st floor, Pansodan Street (upper block), Yangon.
Web: http://pansodan.com/
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/Pansodan/

6. Myanmar Deitta

©Nico Djavanshir. From the project ‘Who I Am.’ by Myanmar Deitta.1 of 4  

သား အကိုု က ကြ်န္ေတာ္ကိုု က်န္းမာ ျကံ႔ခိုုင္ေအာင္ ေလ့က်င့္ေပးတယ္။ ကိုုယ္ခံပညာလညး္ သင္ေပးတယ္။ သူမ်ားေတြက သားကိုု အနိုုင္မက်င့္ေအာင္ သူက သင္ေပးတာ။ သား မွာ ျဖစ္ခ်င္တာေတြ အမ်ားျကီးရွိတယ္။ ကာယဗလေမာင္လည္း ျဖစ္ခ်င္တယ္။ ညီခန္႔ႏိုုင္ My brother trained me in self defence and to be strong and fit so that I can’t be bullied by other people. I have many desires but one wish is to be a body builder. Nyi Khant Naing
သမီး စႏၵရား တီးရတာလည္း ျကိုုက္တယ္။ တေယာတီးရတာလည္း ျကိုုက္တယ္။ ႏွစ္ခုုစလံုုး ျကိုုက္တယ္။ ဒီရက္ပိုုင္း တေယာ ျပိုုင္ပြဲအတြက္ ေလ့က်င့္ေနရာလိုု႔ သိပ္မအားဘူး။ သမီးတေယာျပိုင္ခ်င္တာ ျပိဳင္ပြဲမွာ ႏိုုင္ခ်င္လိုု႔ ဝင္တာမဟုုတ္ဘူး။ ျပိုုင္ပြဲ ဝင္ရင္ စင္ျမင့္ေပၚမွာ ပရိ္တ္သတ္ကိုု ေဖ်ာ္ေျဖရတဲ့ ခံစားခ်က္ကိုု ျကိုုက္လုု႔ိပါ။ ေဆာင္းေလျပည္ဝင္း (ခ) မီးမီး I like playing piano and violin. I have been busy these day with my violin contests. I like to enter violin contests not because I want to win but because I love the feeling of being on the stage performing for the audience. Saung Lay Pyay Win (Mi Mi)
သမီး ဆရာဝန္ျဖစ္ခ်င္တယ္။ ပလပ္စတစ္ ခြဲစိတ္ဆရာဝန္ျဖစ္ခ်င္တာ။ သူမ်ားေတြကိုု လွေစခ်င္တယ္။ သမီးကိုု သမီး လုုပ္ဖိုု႔ေတာ့ ေျကာက္တယ္။ ေနာက္ သမီး အေမကိုု လွေစခ်င္တယ္။ ဆုုရတီထြန္း I want to be doctor, a plastic surgeon. I want others to be beautiful. I am afraid to take surgery myself, but I want my mom to be pretty. Su Rati Tun
သမီးက သမီးသူငယ္ခ်င္းကိုု အရမ္းခ်စ္တယ္။ သူငယ္ခ်င္းကိုု ညဘက္အိမ္မွာေခၚျပီး တူတူအိပ္ခ်င္တယ္။ ရုုပ္ရွင္ေတြ ညလံုုးေပါက္ျကည့္ျပီး သူငယ္ခ်င္းနဲ႔ ေခါက္ဆြဲေတြစားျကမယ္။ အိမ္က ေခါက္ဆြဲစားတာလညး္ သိ္ပ္မျကိုုက္ဘူး။ ခုုေတာ့ ညည သူငယ္ခ်င္းနဲ႔ အင္တာနက္ကေန စကားေျပာရတာပဲ ရွိတယ္။ ဇြန္နွင္းဆက္ I love my best friends. I always want to have a sleep over with them but my family doesn’t let me. We will watch movies all night and have noodles which my family don’t allow me to eat. I can only hang out with my friends at night by chatting on the phone. Zun Hnin Sett

Myanmar Deitta is a not-for-profit civil society organization, whose website shows refreshing and innovative photographs from projects:

‘Building the Naf” twelve women photographers – six from Thuma Collective in Myanmar and six from Kaali Collective in Bangladesh.

“See [Her]e” project involving women working in Myanmar’s professional photography sector.

“Unearth” six photographers documenting Myanmar’s extractive or mining industries sector.

“Who am I” a youth photography workshop with twelve young photographers exploring identity and belonging.

Address: No. 130 Bogalayzay street, Yangon
Email: contact@deitta.org
Web: https://www.deitta.org/

Urban Sketchers Myanmar

When the time comes for social distancing to give way to group activities, those who can draw, and those who are practicing can join Urban Sketchers Myanmar, an open community of artists who (pre-COVID-19) roam the streets of Yangon’s drawing heritage buildings and streetscapes.

Urban Sketchers Myanmar https://www.facebook.com/groups/235825853826385/
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/groups/yangonurbansketchers/

International art

Art has no limits, and from Yangon you can view international collections of the major art galleries and museums, which can be found online at Google Arts & Culture.

Writer Morris Averill first published Myanmore

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