Monsoon Series had successfully met and won many hearts at Suzlee’s last Solo Exhibition in 2009. To close the dynamic year of Suzlee’s painting career in 2011, Suzlee has produced another new series of work called ‘The Kingdom’.
The Kingdom is based on Suzlee’s first expedition with a few friends to Kota Gelanggi Caves, Pahang. Kota Gelanggi is a historical old city that holds approximately 100 caves around it. The mythical caves are the habitat of unique flora and fauna. The place, which is known to archaeological remain is believed existed approximately 1500 years ago. Going through the woods, Suzlee was thrilled by formations of rocks around the cave area. There were places which he had to climb and slopes that he had to slide in the darkness of the cave. It was nothing but tiring, fear and tense; at the same time his anxiety grew more and more to know how this journey would end. High spirits showed by the team had encouraged them to complete the expedition with endless satisfaction to this new experience. Suzlee’s ‘emotional expression’ and ‘interpretation’ of the Kota Gelanggi Caves has developed the new series of paintings.
Suzlee’s new series is a combination of many styles, which he had produced in the past. Spontaneous brush strokes from Movement Series (1995-2005), textured surface from Wall series (2008/09) and attractive composition that created the Monsoon Series (2009/ 2010) all put together to make Kingdom the best paintings ever produced by Suzlee.
During Suzlee’s preparation to produce Kingdom (2009-2011), Suzlee had attended The 8th International Visual Arts Festival in Monastir (20-30 Sept 2010/Tunisia) and an art workshop; MAFE Art Workshop/Malaysia & France (13 -18 July 2011), Kuala Lumpur. Suzlee had used this opportunity to discuss his works and exchange ideas with fellow artists from other countries. The outcome has showed tremendous change on his canvas.
Suzlee is a very active painter that involves in many exhibitions in and outside the country. He has exhibited his works in the United States, United Kingdom, Denmark, Germany, France, Belgium, Italy, Brazil, Cuba, Spain, Canada, China, Japan, Argentina, Greece, Poland, UAE, Australia, Bangladesh and Nepal. He is also recognized as jury in art competitions, art curator and advisor. Upon recognition for his participation in Malaysia art scene, Suzlee was awarded Anugerah Citra Kencana (Citra Kencana Award) by the Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (2011).
Suzlee is a very experienced painter who has been in the art scene for more than 25 years. He started to paint seriously since he was 19. After he graduated from Universiti Teknologi MARA Malaysia he worked in graphic department at advertising and publishing companies before he returned to the University to teach. Since then, Suzlee had taught Fine Arts full time and part time at four higher institutions in Kuala Lumpur. His lengthy experience in both theory and practical shows maturity of his works.
Personally looking at Suzlee’s works, I felt I was drawn to the great masters in the art scene. Suzlee’s spontaneous brush strokes and gestures reminded me of Willem de Kooning’s Woman 1 (1950-52). Sprinkled colors on his canvas reflected Jackson Pollock’s No.5 (1948) and composition of Mark Rothko’s White Cloud over Purple (1957). Suzlee’s paintings are definitely of high reputation. I see him as a great artist in the country with bright future ahead. Feedbacks from Suzlee’s collectors have put his works as art for investment. The Kingdom has higher artistic values and a step ahead from other series he has painted.
Suzlee’s works are collected by corporate organizations and private collectors in Malaysia and outside the country such as Remise Academy (Denmark), Emaar Properties (UAE), Central Bank of Malaysia and National Visual Arts Gallery of Malaysia.
I must say, Suzlee Ibrahim, is the most dynamic abstract painter in Malaysia. Every piece created is Suzlee’s master piece. Kingdom; 20 of his best from the best are for you …
- WinSon Loh (Curator & Founder Pinkguy Art Gallery)