Balance and Provocation – Contemporary art in Burma/Myanmar

8 September 2016 27 November 2016

Group exhibition

Main hall, Färgfabriken

Artists: The Maw Naing, Kolatt, Yadanar Win, Ma Ei

Färgfabriken produces a big exhibition with four contemporary artists from Burma / Myanmar. After 50 years of military repression the country is now facing major social changes and in line with the political development an energetic art scene has emerged. Since 2013, Färgfabriken has worked on various projects in Burma / Myanmar and established an extensive network among local artists and architects. Through this we have met several interesting artists with innovative expressions and been introduced to an art movement which have had little representation in the Western art scene. With this exhibition, we want to emphasise the complexities that infuses the national situation, with the difficulties involved in going from a dictatorship to a fragile democracy. The artists who are participating in the fall exhibition will contribute with reflective installations, strong expressive performances and video pieces. The visitor will experience a captivating mix of local traditions, social critique and modern influences; a flow between balance and provocation.

Participating artists

The Maw Naing (b. 1971) is a film director and installation artist. He will participate in the exhibition with the work In and Out of Thin Layers, which includes fifty mosquito nets in different colours, hanging from floor to ceiling. Maw Naings work is much influenced by Buddhism and invites the visitors to participate in the work through meditation. This piece illustrates the view of balance as a tool to achieve stability in the Burmese society.

Kolatt (b. 1987) works with performances and film, his work often concerns LGBT issues, which problematizes the conservative views on gender and identity in Burma / Myanmar. Kolatt has, through Färgfabriken, received a residence scholarship at IASPIS and he will during the opening, 8th of September, hold a performance in the main hall. Kolatt participate in the exhibition with the video piece King and Queen together with the artist Yadanar Win.

Yadanar Win (b. 1990) is a performance artist who through her work explores her own identity and role as a working woman in today’s Burma / Myanmar. In Kolatt and Yadanar Wins collective work, King and Queen, they transform a traditional Burmese wedding ceremony into something else, through play, staging and questioning current roles and expectations.

Ma Ei (b. 1978) is a video and performance artist, working with women’s role in today’s Burma / Myanmar and studies the relationship between the traditional and the prevailing image of what a woman is and is expected to be. To illustrate this Ma Ei experiment with different attributes such as clothes, rumours and sex. Ma Ei participating in the exhibition with her film Strawberry Piece.

Further reading

Download the exhibition folder by clicking the image.

An art scene in transition
– By Nathalie Johnston


The political situation in Burma/Myanmar – Seminar by the Swedish Burma Committée
1 October 2016 14.00

Johanna Kvist from the Swedish Burma Committée will talk about the current political changes in Burma/Myanmar, a country transitioning from military dictatorship into a fragile democracy. 

The Monk – Film screening of The Maw Naings feature film

27 October 19.00 Main hall, Färgfabriken

Färgfabriken is screening The Maw Naings award winning feature film The Monk from 2014.

Read more about The Monk

Guided meditation and practical lecture with Kelsang Jangdom
12 November 14.15

Examine meditation, under the guidance of Buddhist monk, Kelsang Jangdom, held in the exhibition Balance and Provocation, placed inside the installation In and Out of Thin Layers by The Maw Naing.