Art, Emerging Artist

Faris Heizer’s Evocative Narrative Paintings

In the bustling art scene of Singapore, one name has been steadily making waves with his introspective and evocative works: Faris Heizer. Born in 1998, Heizer graduated from NAFA with a Diploma in Fine Arts in 2018, and since then, his journey in the art world has been nothing short of remarkable.

With a successful solo exhibition at Cuturi Gallery and participation in prestigious group shows around the globe, including venues like Tang Contemporary in Beijing, Galerie LJ in Paris, and Harpers Gallery in New York, Heizer has established himself as an artist to watch. His participation with Kohn Gallery at Expo Chicago 2023 further solidifies his growing international presence.

Heizer’s artistic oeuvre revolves around the tradition of figurative painting, wherein he captures personal observations of contemporary society, particularly focusing on its structural underpinnings rooted in capitalism. His works delve into the behavioral and performative aspects of social relations, often featuring the white-collar worker in various imagined realities charged with intimacy, tension, and bewilderment.

A defining characteristic of Heizer’s artistic process is his methodical approach to layering and composition. Beginning with thinly primed canvases, he applies acrylic inks to create nuanced undertones, which inform the development of his figurative elements. Bold, gestural brushstrokes then come into play, defining and enveloping his figures within arresting narrative scenes.

Waiting for the green light

Heizer’s figures, often depicted in exaggerated poses, evoke a sense of intimacy and existential contemplation. Whether it’s an arm shielding the sun’s glare or a figure slouched in exhaustion, Heizer’s paintings transform mundane objects and environments into poignant moments of reflection.

Central to Heizer’s compositions is the interplay between light and dark, which imbues his works with a theatrical quality. This contrast creates a sense of pensive loneliness in pieces like “Waiting for the Green Light” and “Feels Like Years,” where subjects are captured in moments of quiet introspection amidst urban stimuli.

Yet, amidst this contemplative atmosphere, Heizer infuses his works with a touch of dry humor, as seen in “What are the chances?” Here, a figure crouches beneath the fluorescent glow of a vending machine, humorously attempting to find abandoned change in the coin slot.

Don’t let the sun catch you crying

In describing his artistic process, Heizer emphasizes the importance of narratives rooted in emotion and the quotidian. His compositions evoke echoes of Edward Hopper’s realist paintings and draw inspiration from the elongated bodies of the Mannerists, all while engaging in a dialogue with Neo-Realist painter Liu Xiaodong.

Faris Heizer’s reflective body of work delicately bridges the gap between subject and viewer, tapping into the uncanny within the ordinary. As he continues to evolve as an artist, one can only anticipate the deeper narratives and explorations that lie ahead in his artistic journey.

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