Suga Art Gallery in Houston will open a new exhibition featuring internationally renowned Indonesian abstract artist HANAFI and his protege Nubia Gala, a Colombian abstract artist living in the Houston area. The show is titled Mentor and Protege Converge, East to West and will run from May 21 through June 3, with an reception on May 28 from 5-8 p.m. Suga Gallery is located at 1416 Westheimer Road in Houston. For more information, visit www.sugaartgallery.com.
HANAFI is an important figure in the art world. In Indonesia, he was among the ten best in the Phillip Morris Indonesia Art Awards in 1997 and a finalist in the Indofood Art Awards in 2002 and 2003. He has held exhibitions at the Saathchi Gallerie in London and at the Museum of Girona in Spain. His work has also been exhibited in Canada, Japan and Singapore. He has participated in over 80 art exhibitions including the National Gallery of Art in Jakarta which was attended by 8,000 people this March. This will be his first visit to the U.S.
HANAFI and his protege, Nubia Gala, bring their passion for creating abstraction through their own unique use of color, shape, and form. HANAFI’s abstract paintings are characterized by his minimalistic, elegant muted color palette, the use of light brown, gold, blue, grey and white infused with the luminosity of natural light. Gala generates surface interest in her paintings by the use of multiple layers of colors and textures, making their work distinctly different.
Nubia Gala met her mentor, HANAFI in Indonesia in 2003. “I was surrounded by canvases that seemed larger than life,” Gala said, “I was astounded by the sheer size of the studio he had designed and its architectural concept.” Gala was struck by HANAFI’S generosity and willingness to share his work space and tools. “It was an extraordinary opportunity that opened my eyes to other forms of artistic expression,” Gala said, “that experience allowed me to find my way back to painting abstracts again after years of figurative work.”
Nubia Gala went on to experience success in her own artistic career and to become a mentor to fellow artists beginning their journeys. She has been represented by galleries in California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas and Tennessee. She was featured in the L.A. Modern and Contemporary Art Fair and chosen to exhibit in the Latin American Pavillion At Red Dot Art Fair during the Miami Art Basel week. She participated in the John Palmer Gallery’s mentorship ESCAPISTS program. In Houston, Gala was recognized as the Hispanic Artist of the Year for 2015 by the Sucesos Newspaper and received the award Colombian Pride Art and Culture by B.E.C.A. Her art is displayed in a variety of public and diplomatic venues and she was commissioned to create a 30 foot painting for the Houston Community College Campus.
During HANAFI’s visit to Houston, he will also take part in a cultural exchange organized by Nubia Gala and sponsored by the General Consulates of Indonesia and Colombia. The event will take place on May 19 and will feature a live painting performance on stage accompanied by award winning Colombian Pianist Dr. Christian Restrepo.
Suga Art Gallery takes pride in expanding culture and enriching the connection of nations through the arts, bringing together artists from different Latin American countries. “I am thrilled to help bring HANAFI to the U.S.,” Gala said, “and to showcase our work side by side at SUGA Gallery is amazing, it’s like coming full circle.”