Yanyun Chen


Born 1986
Hometown Singapore
Lives and works Singapore

About the artist
Yanyun Chen works in charcoal. Her studio-based drawing practice is driven by questions and the craft of working in charcoal. Her first exhibited series Chasing Flowers challenges the “still-life” genre, by drawing portraits of flowers as they wilt. They are representations of time manifested in the changing conditions of decaying flowers, yet culminating in what appears to be unmoving still-life drawings. This led to explorations in the mythologies of flowers in her ongoing series PoppiesIn the 2016 Horn Trio concert at the Esplanade, Yanyun presented her Experiments with Johannes Brahm’s Horn Trio Movement 1 – 4 shown alongside the performance of Brahms’ compositions. Her drawings have been exhibited in Singapore, notably at ChanHampe Galleries, Visual Arts Development Association Singapore, Jendela (Visual Art Space) and NoiseSingapore.

Aside from drawing, she does research navigating minor gestures, with particular emphasis on themes surrounding blinking, and nudityShe received her Ph.D. at the European Graduate School in Switzerland, where she also obtained her Masters in Communications. She received the Lee Kuan Yew Gold Medal Award and the Nanyang Scholarship for her Bachelors in Fine Arts [Hons] 1st class from Nanyang Technological University (Singapore); and has been trained at the Florence Academy of Art (Sweden), The Animation Workshop (Denmark), and under puppet makers Miroslav Trejtnar and Zdar Sorm (Czech Republic). She has published books including 50 Drawing Exercises (co-written, published by Ministry of Education, Singapore), Tracing Etymology: Origin and Time; Monsters and Demons (published by Atropos) and It’s Fiction (co-written, published by Delere Press). Jimmyfish, an eco-awareness flash game built by her team, was awarded the Jury Selection in the 15th Japan Media Arts Festival, 2011.

Currently, she teaches drawing at Yale-NUS College, National University of Singapore and at the School of Art Design and Media, Nanyang Technological University, in Singapore. She is also the co-founder and managing partner of publishing house Delere Press LLP, Singapore.

European Graduate School, Saas Fee, Switzerland
Doctor of Philosophy ABD.
Master of Arts in Communication (Distinction)
The Florence Academy of Art, Molndal, Sweden
Intensive Drawing Course
Media Development Authorities (Singapore) Talent Assistance and Training Allowance Grant 2013 ; Best Figure Drawing of the year 2013
Puppets in Prague, Prague, Czech Republic
Marionette Carving and Puppets for Animated Film Workshops
National Youth Council (Singapore) Grant 2009
Nanyang Technological University, School of Art, Design, and Media, Singapore
Bachelor of Fine Arts, Digital Animation (1st class honours)
Lee Kuan Yew Gold Medal Award 2009
Nanyang Scholarship 2005-2009
The Animation Workshop, Viborg, Denmark
3d Character Animation Workshop and The Drawing Academy
Media Development Authority (Singapore)
Capabilities Development Grant 2008
National Junior College, Singapore
Ministry of Education Art Elective Programme Scholarship 2003-2004
Sapphire Scholars Programme 2003-2004

Solo shows
Stories of a Woman and her Dowry, Grey Projects, Singapore
Flower Flights, Art Porters Gallery, Singapore
Chasing Flowers, NUSS, Singapore

Group shows
Untapped Emerging, Shophouse 5, Visual Arts Development Association, Singapore
Spirit of Place, (part of Liao Jiekai’s The Drawing Room), Jendela Visual Arts Space, Singapore
What! Another Exhibition? (with Singapore Horn Trio), Esplanade Recital Studio, Singapore
Studying Life, Artistry, Singapore
Noise Singapore 2015 Festival Exhibition, Singapore
Fresh Takes, ChanHampe Gallery, Singapore
The Mill Destruction & Rebirth, The Mill, Singapore
Floral Magic x On Pedder, Singapore
Noise Singapore 2014 Festival Exhibition, Singapore

ArtOutreach IMPART Visual Artist Award
President Young Talent’s 2018 People’s Choice Award
Japan Media Arts Festival Jury Selection Award for Eco-awareness flash game Jimmyfish

Other artworks from author

Filter Options