Maya Gallery is thrilled to announce Tranquil Essence, the fourth solo exhibition by award-winning Singapore-based artist Jaleela Niaz. Curated by Charleen Leo, this exhibition takes place from October 14th to 28th, 2023 and features an impressive display of 40 mesmerising mixed media paintings.
Tranquil Essence invites audiences to embark on an intimate journey through Jaleela’s artworks, offering a serene exploration into the aesthetic and emotional richness inspired by the beauty of nature—including oceanic corals and terrestrial bamboos—and the elegance of Islamic calligraphy.
As a self-taught artist, Jaleela Niaz has cultivated a unique artistic style, characterised by the layering of intricate patterns and motifs in metallic hues of gold and silver against vibrant and intensely coloured acrylic paint backgrounds. Her signature artistry creates a dynamic interplay between colour and texture, revealing depth and movement, and bringing the subject matter to life. Jaleela draws inspiration from her keen observation of the natural world. Her works, while resonant with realism, are not replications or mimicking of real-life imageries. Instead, these compelling works serve as embodiments of her reflections on life, nature, and human emotion.
"We are delighted to present Jaleela Niaz's highly anticipated exhibition at Maya Gallery," said Ms. Masturah Sha’ari, Co-founder of Maya Gallery. "Jaleela's ability to create a sense of depth and dimensionality in her artworks is truly remarkable. We are confident that visitors to the exhibition will be captivated by the profound emotions and narratives encapsulated in each piece."
Notably, 22 of the 40 works have been created specifically for this exhibition, making their premiere showcase to the public. The works are categorized into three themes: Corals, Bamboos and Calligraphy, each offering a unique visual exploration of the artist’s aesthetic narrative.
In the painting, "Let there be spaces in your togetherness" (2019), Jaleela draws inspiration from the famous lines of Khalil Gibran—"But let there be spaces in your togetherness and let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls." Through a harmonious interplay of bold colours and a meticulously crafted metallic layer, Jaleela skilfully conveys the beauty of Gibran's message. Fascinated by the splendour of the coral reefs and the wonders of the underwater world, she has chosen corals as the focal point of her artwork. Just as Khalil Gibran's writings emphasise the importance of personal space in our lives—to dream, explore, build bridges, foster understanding, and achieve—Jaleela accentuates this concept with striking visual symbolism.
With a different subject matter but employing the same artistic vocabulary, this striking work of vibrant red background juxtaposed against the imposing golden bold strokes draws inspiration from the symbolism of bamboos in Feng Shui. "Lucky Bamboos (Blessing)" (2019) features 21 stalks of ‘bamboos’ which represent an all-encompassing blessing. In other words, 21 stalks represent harmony and success in health, wealth, relationships, prosperity and fortune.
In her Calligraphy paintings, for example in this newly produced set of 3 paintings depicting the phrase of “Subhanallah”, “Alhamdulillah” and “Allahu Akbar” (2023), the rhythm of each word is gracefully adorned with beautiful intricate designs. It is as if each detail has been meticulously woven into a tapestry of words and patterns. Jaleela explores the art of calligraphy in a unique perspective with a breath-taking display of artistry and precision.
Having captivated art enthusiasts and highly sought after by collectors, Jaleela has also won numerous accolades including the Pravasi Express Special Award for Excellence in Visual Arts in 2018, which are given to Indians from different part of the world to honour their contributions to society and endeavours in their chosen field/profession. She will be present at the opening reception on 14 October. Jaleela will also share more about her inspirations and creative processes in dialogue with the curator of this exhibition, Charleen Leo as part of the Art Conversation on 21 October.
Join us at Maya Gallery this October to witness the captivating beauty of Tranquil Essence, a Solo Exhibition by Jaleela Niaz.
Jaleela Niaz is an award winning, Singapore based contemporary artist who is known for her mesmerizing mixed media paintings. Her artistic endeavours transcend convention, offering a profound avenue for personal expression and creative resonance. With more than 130 group shows and 3 solos to her credit, she exhibits her works internationally and has a collector base world-wide. She has successfully exhibited her works in Singapore, Dubai, Malaysia, Netherlands, Hungary, Nepal, Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, Sweden, South Korea, Uganda, Indonesia, Ukraine, Spain, Argentina, Turkey, France, Maldives and in 12 Indian cities. Jaleela’s paintings are liked and collected by many for her distinct signature style that revolves around the intricate patterns she weaves into her creations. Her works have graced homes and galleries across the world and are often published in magazines.
Charleen Leo (b.1990) is currently an independent curator from Singapore. She was Curator, Exhibitions and Production at ArtScience Museum, Singapore and has curated and produced several exhibitions including Future World: Where Art Meets Science (2016 -2022), Wind Walkers: Theo Jansen’s Strandbeests (2018) and most recently, Sensory Odyssey: Into the Heart of Our Living World (2023) and MENTAL: Colours of Wellbeing (2022 – 2023).
Maya Gallery is a leading international art gallery based in Singapore. Established in 2012, the gallery has organised and curated numerous exhibitions in Singapore and overseas, including art fairs. Through collaborations with corporate organisations, institutions, and charities, it also fosters cultural dialogue and discourse. Upholding a social responsibility, Maya Gallery engages the public in inculcating an appreciation for art, contributing significantly to the city's art scene. Co-founded by Jeffrey Wandly and Masturah Sha’ari, it has presented works by award-winning artists including Cultural Medallion recipients Iskandar Jalil and Sarkasi Said, and Hadiah Warisan (Heritage Award) winner Idris Ali, and actively supports emerging talent.