The DIORAMA series is a continuation of the artist’s exploration on imaginary characters and landscapes as a metaphor for
the human condition. What distinguishes this series is the use of layered paper cutouts to create a sense of depth and
weight to the line drawings. Through this the artist intends to bring another dimension to her line drawings and to play with
cast shadow in the compositions.

The term ‘diorama’ is used to describe the creation of a scene using models against a painted backdrop. Museums often feature dioramas
and as a child the artist was attracted to the displays in the natural history section. The fascination arose from the possibilities of
creating different scenes, for example by adding imaginary monsters and creatures into the landscape and how this changes the narrative.

The artist decided to create her first layered cutout piece as a submission for the UOB Painting of the Year 2015 art competition.
THE WONDERING HEART is set in an imaginary inner world represented by an anthropomorphic landscape. At the center is a
jeweled heart with an open door from which pairs of identical imaginary creatures are coming into this world. The identical pairs
allude to the concept of dualism in life, and is also reflected in the landscape where night and day are simultaneously depicted.
The landscape is at once wild and familiar, with sights such as oil palm plantations and mangrove forests turned into
something fantastical. Upon closer observation what looked to be oil palms are the tail plumes of bird-like creatures with their
heads peeking out near the ground. In a nearby field a tapir, horse and crocodile play a game of football. Much of the landscape is
based on the scenery the artist observed while travelling back and forth from Penang to Kuala Lumpur.

THE WONDERING HEART is the recipient of the Gold award in the Emerging Artist category from the UOB Painting of the Year 2015.
You can find out more about the award and a showcase of winning artworks at UOB Painting of the Year 2015's website.
COSMIC WANDERERS grew out of two little humanoid characters that first appeared in The Wondering Heart piece, walking out
of the doorway in the heart. The artist wanted to continue exploring the theme of duality and these characters evolved into two
stylized figures inspired by designs from local wayang kulit (shadow puppet) forms. One is predominantly dark, the other is
predominantly light. The dark one has a constellation of bright stars glowing within it, while the bright one has a constellation of
dark matter in it. The leads back to the concept of the yin and yang, where there exists light in the dark and darkness in light.

The Cosmic Wanderers deal with the concept of choice and decision-making; about how each choice we make has far-reaching
consequences whether we are aware of it or not. Some choices may seem to be made out of good intentions yet have negative
consequences, and the same goes for the other. The artist presents these two characters in an ambiguous narrative so the viewer
can draw their conclusions for themselves.
OTHERS is a body of work created in the layered cutout manner but does not directly reference the the Cosmic Wanderers theme.
Some are explorations into technique, such as In the Clouds. A few other pieces, namely Moving Forward, Hello/Goodbye and
The Picnic fall into the theme of shadow children interacting with masked monsters, playing on the different sides of the human ego.
All art and content copyrights belong to Winnie Cheng (ERYN) | Updated Jan 2017