If we could see emotions, how would it look like? The One Academy Fine artists Steffi Rebecca Anthony and Liya Perfidious visually articulated its picturesque imagery through ‘Aether’, a joint exhibition held at The One Academy choreographed to express how aether is flammable yet numb and tasteless and immaterial, showing what cannot be seen. The exhibition also represents the Steffi and Liya’s journey in pursuit to be an artist at The One Academy.
Hailing from Puchong, the 24-year-old Steffi is a testament of how even though nothing is easy in life, as long as you put your heart to it, you will make it. Even from a young age, Steffi knew she is good at two things – writing and drawing. She first pursuit journalism in another college but when the course was discontinued, she made the life-changing switch to pursue art in The One Academy.
She discovered her love for art at 4 years old when her then pregnant mother bought a box of Buncho and painted with her during her maternity leave. Even when her mother returned to work, she continued painting. She painted stick figures, drew on her own picture books and mimicked a lot of drawings.
In her teens, she actively participated in art clubs and led them. She also often led in mural painting projects in her school. These projects made her feel accomplished. While she was studying in The One Academy, she has accumulated too many artworks, more space than she had at home. Her brother would help arrange her masterpieces to be sold at Amcorp Mall. A collector who liked her style met up with her to find out more about her and later was converted to her regular buyer. While coping with her studies, she also teach arts and craft to children and from ages 5 to 16 years old in 2 art centres, one of which followed a British syllabus.
For ‘Aether’, Steffi conceptualised a glass series depicting fragility, thoughts and emotions, inspired from our interactions with different people in our life. As having conversations with people can sometimes be seen like threading on glass, not knowing how much pressure to exert on it until a crack finally shows up.
Steffi’s fine artist partner, Liya was a pure Science student. At the age of 21, she has already held 2 solo exhibitions. As a child, she drew a lot and was further encouraged when people said that they looked nice. Over the years, she improved her drawing and was going to pursue medicine. She instead pursued Fine Arts at The One Academy.
Liya is also known as a ‘Suicide Enthusiast’ and inspired by the Dadaist Jacques Rigaut, a French surrealist poet. Her style leans towards abstract surrealism. She loved incorporating lines and geometrical shapes, especially glass-like triangles which represent frailty. She even created her own symbols and repeated some patterns as she believed repetition is a sign of traumatic experience.
In the exhibition, Liya’s artwork speaks on dormant emotions – neutral and dead – the result of extreme regret, shame and guilt. Her series of artwork is builds upon the idea of punishment. The minimal use of colours in her artwork emphasised the lack of life and excitement.
Both Steffi and Liya have been under the tutelage of Mr. Gan Chin Lee and Mr. Koh Cheng Kuan, one of Malaysia’s top illustrators, for several years in pursuit of their diploma studies in Fine Arts. The artists are leading the Fine Arts department at The One Academy, one of the leading creative institutions in the country.
Steffi and her artwork entitled ‘Wishful Thinking’ exhibited at the ‘Aether’, located at Gallery Hall, Block M, The One Academy.
Steffi’s artwork entitled ‘Chaos in its Glorious Splendour’ Love’ exhibited at the ‘Aether’, located at Gallery Hall, Block M, The One Academy.
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