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The University of Manitoba campuses are located on original lands of Anishinaabeg, Cree, Ojibwe-Cree, Dakota, and Dene peoples, and on the National Homeland of the Red River M├ętis. More

Storying Exhibition

Artwork Gallery

Artist Statement

Artist Name: Esther Liang

Title: Broken membrane

Medium: Oil paint on canvas

Size/Dimension: 30 x 40 inches

Year: 2020


Artist Statement:

The piece “Broken membrane” illustrates a breakthrough and the overcoming of fear. I began this self-portrait having the perfect controlled visionary of its outcome. However, an unfortunate wave of creative block hit me as I sat in front of the canvas, frozen for weeks. I became increasingly frustrated with my own craft and identity, trying to gather myself together yet not truly realizing what I was missing. The obsession with my perfect visionary and the expectations weighing on my back crushed me entirely and broke down my insecurities and eventually soothed my mind. Through this inevitable struggle, I discovered the freedom in art-making and the importance to truly connect with the subject and emotions when creating something. Abandoning the addiction of perfecting detail, just like my obsession with controlling and perfecting my own image to project into the world. I was once told to try the things I am most unfamiliar with in order to grow. My constant avoidance of this action has chained me within my own head and blinded me. Through this project, I secured my identity and for once truly created an emotional connection with the piece. Although this emotional connection is both positive and negative, staring at the piece makes me see all the imperfections that I’ve always feared, yet slowly I am beginning to be attracted to it: the beauty of accidents, and the beauty of the unknown.