A man called Tontay Thein Win / San Minn
A man called Tontay Thein Win
Acrylic on canvas, 122 x 72 cm , 2007
San Minn is a seminal figure in contemporary Burmese art. He was the leader of the Gangaw Village Art Group, the first artists collaborative for contemporary art in Myanmar founded by a group of Rangoon University students in 1979. The Group was a subject of a recent exhibition held at the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum entitled "Freedom in Blossom!: Gangaw Village and Experimental Art in 1980s Burma" that traced their artistic journeys during the hardships and constraints faced under socialism and military rule, and changes effected with the arrival of democratisation in Myanmar. The artist is also a founding member of the Inya Gallery in Yangon, another important grouping of artists committed to furthering contemporary artistic practices in Myanmar.
Chryse Fine Art is proud to present a small group of paintings representing different phases of San Minn's impressive artistic career which touched on issues like democracy, social vices and eroding Burmese tradition and culture brought about by the opening up of Myanmar. San Minn's works are often imbuded with metaphors and at times absurdities and humour. One of San Minn's favourite artworks in this collection is "Love and War (1974)" of a quirky looking tank which he explained signified his youth where being in love was like going to war. In another painting "Bird Flu", San Minn had a picture of a chicken head imposed onto a fully armed combatant. For his take on changing values of Burmese youth in "Stream of Culture", San Minn painted an image of a Burmese girl in traditional dress superimposed onto a body dressed in modern attire straight out of Korean K Pop.
San Minn's works can be found in the collections of major museums such as the National Art Gallery of Singapore and Fukuoka Asian Art Museum.