Winnie Sidharta Ambron

Artist Statement

"The primary modality through which I think and work is collage. The only difference is that in my head the division is intangible. The cut - the edit, the single chance, the removal and reassembling of time, of form, and of space has been the grounding component of my practice. This has been the guiding thread throughout my investigations of image, identity, and the historic precedent of portraiture as a means of coalescing the disparate dimensions of our fragmented human identities. 

My work is manifested in contemplation of metaphysical ideas of an ideal image. I mainly use images from women’s fashion magazines because they are among the most looked to sources in the governing of desire and the propagation of notions of female beauty. I cut and sift through thousands of abstract pieces, layering them atop or beside one another, touching and overlapping to produce a continuous “whole.” The collage in itself is by nature a form of rupture in the image’s latent hierarchy. These fragmented bodies become tokens of power and a resistance to the dominant cultural forms. They reflect the desire to transmit an ideal new image within the realm of figurative painting. 

In my process, I join together painting and collage on a uniform surface to evoke the temporality of montage. Whereas painting demonstrates the ability of my hand, collage favors and demonstrates a freedom of choice in its immediacy and abruptness. Painting affords me a more Proustian method of slowing down and taking hold of the nuance and subtlety that each fragment captures. Together, painting and collage reveal the gaps and cuts between images that become metaphors for lost time and memory. They point to the paths that retain and store our visual history as a sequence of decisive moments.

As primary sources become secondary, the resulting images become abstract morphologies that complicate representations of women and identity.  Through the experience of immigration and assimilation, I find myself in my work. This association with a body that I have become is something that is both inside and outside of the margins - a place where I can put or position myself against the ideal image, creating a contrasting new gestalt, one that contains a complex entity." - Winnie Sidharta Ambron

Artist Bio

As an artist born in East Java, Indonesia, Winnie Sidharta Ambron has had many opportunities to observe the diverse social and political divisions between eastern and western culture.  After pursuing a painting degree at The Central Academy in Beijing, Winnie spent several years living in China.  In 2010, Winnie was accepted to The Ohio State University, where she received her MFA and later taught in the Painting and Drawing Department.  She currently lives and works in New York City, and continues to examine the overlaps and divisions between eastern and western culture with specific interest in notions of beauty, consumption and identity.