• Tbrains_detail
  • Tbrains
  • Cat
  • Tick
  • Tick_detail
  • Cow
  • Cow_detail
  • Giantsoul
  • Giantsoul_detail
  • Dog
  • Dog_detail
  • Lipstick
  • Tshirt
  • Bagface
Art

Goodbye Turdbrains!

Posted by Alex Bec,

Goodbye Turdbrains! is undoubtedly a great title for a show. Unfortunately more often than not, exhibitions with such headlines can be a little hit and miss. But fear not! In this case there should be no such anxiety because hanging and producing the work is the brilliant Mimi Leung.

Mimi is an illustrator at the height of her talents, showing some work created while on a residency in the a central Australian desert. What better prompt to say hello to Mimi, ask her what we could expect, and why it is that everything she makes seems is so unashamedly vibrant.

Tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do

I’m an artist and illustrator. Graduated from RCA communication in 2007 and since then have spent a year in Hong Kong making new work and having exhibitions here and there.

Why did you decide to go to Hong Kong in particular – is that where you’re from?

I was born in Hong Kong and have some family there. By the time I finished RCA I was really fed up with London and art in general, I wanted a fresh start on a clean slate. I went to Hong Kong to figure out what I wanted, get to know my family a bit better and explore some new things/people.

What are your drawings of?

They are images of the things around me filtered through my thoughts, my memories and imagination. Everything is a very surreal and pretty mixed up, the colours are urgent and excessive.

Why do you use so many colours? Are you a colourful person yourself?

I spent 2 years at the RCA trying to be clever and making black and white prints so I suppose once I got out I wanted to go nuts. Eventually I found a way of working with as many colours as I wanted. I like colours and the way you can put them together almost arbitrarily, and also maybe because I am greedy – I want everything, all the colours, now. I don’t think I’m a particularly colourful person… maybe after a few drinks.

What work can we expect in the show?

A lot of colour, a lot of silliness and energy. (Though the first time I laid out all the work I felt a bit dizzy and a little sick because of all the colours…) All the work was done whilst I was on a 3 month residency in Yuendumu which is in the desert of central Australia, so landscapes, logs and dead animals mostly.

How did you find out about Yuendumu, and why did you want to go and work there?

I have a friend there and decided to visit. It’s not the sort of place you go to without knowing someone there. I worked at the local aboriginal art centre and learned a lot. I had a lot of time to think and wonder about in the desert. I like to experience things that are quite extreme, and the difference between central London and central Australia is pretty extreme.

How do you make your work?

Everything I do is by hand, I draw everything on paper and colour in gouache. Working on the computer confuses me sometimes cos nothing is really real, and I can’t get very precise control over the colours.

You seem to work in lots of different places, do you find it difficult working in one place?

I get restless… I am restless. I’m bored too easily and have a stupid attention span. If I stay in one place too long I feel stuck. Though increasingly I am getting tired of never fully unpacking my suitcase and forgetting where I left this and that. I would like to have a proper studio and stay there for a while but I haven’t really found anywhere I like enough yet.

Goodbye Turdbrains!
Tenderpixel Gallery London
WC2N 4HE
July 17 – August 10
Tue – Sat 10.30am – 7.00pm

Private View July 16, 6.00pm-10.00pm

Ab-300

Posted by Alex Bec

Alex is one of the directors of It’s Nice That who now oversees our sister creative agency INT Works. For several years he oversaw the Monday Morning Music Video feature until it came to an end in 2014.

Most Recent: Art View Archive

  1. List-willy

    Writing is rarely a chore. However, sometimes you find yourself working on a piece that reaffirms why internships spent schlepping round Covent Garden in the pissing rain on breakfast compote runs, and hours practising writing “multi-storey carpark” in shorthand are more than worth the irritation.

  2. List

    I don’t care how nice the wallpaper or the lampshades may be, there’s something creepy about the stereotypical American motel featured in films, novels and plays. As if expressly to prove my point, artist Airco Caravan created a series called Crime Scene in which she paints the rooms that have previously played host to murders, suicides and accidental deaths.

  3. List

    Swedish creative Henrik Franklin is a designer, illustrator and animator with two of the world’s leading design schools (Konstfack in Sweden and Rhode Island School of Design) sparkling on his CV. Invited to showcase his considerable talents in Anna Lidberg’s Gallery 1:10 – “the miniature gallery for contemporary art” – Henrik produced a table of tiny tomes and the attention-to-detail on each cover design is really impressive.

  4. Main

    Victoria Siddall has worked at Frieze for just over a decade and two years ago was made Director of Frieze Masters. Excitingly, just a few weeks ago she was appointed Director of Frieze Masters, Frieze New York and Frieze London. As well as being one of the most powerful women in the art world, Victoria is also my sister, so I was curious to find out how she’s feeling on the dawn of her new career.

  5. List

    The Turbine Hall at the Tate Modern has an incredible presence when it’s void of installations, which is what’s so wonderful about the huge enclosed space. As much as I admire the vast emptiness though, it’s even more exciting when a piece of work is placed in the hall and interrupts the vacuum. Opening today, American sculptor Richard Tuttle is the latest commissioned artist to show his work in the space and his 24ft sculpture certainly makes an impact.

  6. Main2

    I came across the work of Matthias Geisler over on Booooooom the other day and was reminded that we hadn’t posted something like this in a while. Matthias’ work is a swirling blend of spirits and creatures that are created with meticulous use of pencil crayons and water-colours. Is it me or are watercolours real in at the moment? All the cool kids seem to be using them.

  7. 8

    A kind of magic happens when Seth Armstrong puts brush to canvas. Having only been familiar with his work for the Mr Porter Journal, I became instantly bewitched by his paintings when clicking through his website.

  8. List

    Whatever the some naysayers may claim there is an art to collage and not everyone can do it, despite how good you think your teenage collages of cut-out red lips, Leonardo DiCaprio and puppies were. Anthony Zinonos is the perfect example of this, having featured on the site previously he’s updated his portfolio with some really cool bits and bobs.

  9. List

    There’s something very fun and raw about Jessica Hans’ vases and her approach to ceramics in general. Based in Philadelphia, she’s had a longstanding interest in foraging and raw materials since university; this has carried over into her ceramics work, which in the past has seen her driving to clay sites, digging her materials out of the ground and then firing them in their original state to see what would happen.

  10. Listt

    “To be an artist and for anyone to care vaguely about what you do is a great thing,” says street artist Moose in this fascinating new Nissan campaign, but his work is more important than most. As the inventor of reverse graffiti – whereby he uses a high-powered pressure washer to stencil imagery in the dirt that accumulates in our cities – Moose’s work asks questions about our attitudes to pollution in a very creative way.

  11. List

    To stare into a Danny Fox painting is like waking up in a world written by Charles Bukowski on a particularly heavy bender. There’s sex and drinking and guns, plus boxers and strippers and cowboys; here a horse, there a tiger. It’s intense and unnerving and exciting, but although there’s something very contemporary about Danny’s paintings, his rise to prominence owes a great deal to the support of a more well-established artist (an age-old route for up-and-coming artistic stars).

  12. Listjmp_cg_house_float_10

    Heads are turning in Covent Garden this morning, and they’re not just looking at the usual street performers – they’re gawping at a levitating building. Master of illusions Alex Chinneck’s latest mind-boggling public art installation is on show in what must surely be the spiritual home of his craft; one of the busiest piazzas in London and its theatrical hub. His floating building follows on from a sliding house, upside down house and many other puzzling optical illusions.

  13. List

    Back in 2013 designers Jessica Walsh and Timothy Goodman launched 40 Days of Dating, where they entered into a seven week relationship with each other to explore the world of romance from a creative perspective.