A Handshake in Thought


Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890)

A public education exhibit, 2009
Prints of artist’s paintings, artist’s writings, science quips, The Bedroom corner set from recycled 60-year old antique farmhouse, fake sunflowers in wooden pots


Just like the film, VAN GOGH: Brush with Genius, we hope to bring our contemporary audience some of van Gogh’s insights that we find astoundingly relevant despite nearly 120 years after his passing. The artist’s writings are excerpts from his letters* to his beloved brother and art patron, Theo.

van Gogh consistently signed off all his letters, sometimes just “with a handshake”; other times with “a hearty handshake in thought”, and occasionally, he adds: “and, believe me.” He always ends with, “Yours, Vincent.” Poignantly, this was notably absent in his last letter. When you read his letters, you can’t help but get this sense that he was writing beyond Theo; one senses he was, in fact, addressing the future generations – us! Van Gogh speaks directly to us even now through his paintings, drawings, writings and indeed, his life. We hope you may be inspired to return his extended handshake and hold it in your thoughts as you begin your exploration of a grand Master’s incredible journey where art and life was simply inseparable.


*Through the Letters of Vincent van Gogh edited by Mark Roskill, Touchstone, Nov 2008 paperback edition.

This exhibition was commissioned and heartily supported by the Singapore Science Centre.


The New Conceptual


The New Conceptual
November 2008-January 2009

CharKOL Gallery’s inaugural exhibition entitled “The New Conceptual” is a group show of ten local and international artists. The show looks forward by looking back to the birth of conceptual art or idea art, where artists attempted to make art which was essentially unsalable in protest against the over-commercialisation of art. The spirit of the day was to create an art untainted by concerns for profit. The artists in this show have all persisted in creating their highly individualistic works and all are what you could term thinking artists. Regardless of  the current or past trends they seem willing to put themselves on the line in order to pursue art which they feel is worth the effort.

Featuring Cheo Chai-Hiang, Cecily Cheo, Amanda Heng, Peng-Ean Khoo, Susie Lingham, Sakthivel, Vincent Twardzik Ching, Twardzik Ching Chor Leng, Brigid Watson and Joshua Yang.