Interview: ‘Sawangwongse Yawnghwe’s Historical Minimalism’

Sawangwongse Yawnghwe, Protest III, 2021. Oil and acrylic on linen. 88.9 x 142.24 cm. Courtesy the artist and Jane Lombard Gallery.

A direct descendant of the royal family of the Shan State in Myanmar, Sawangwongse Yawnghwe knows history and archives do not always tell the whole story.

Working across painting and installation, Yawnghwe examines patterns of political abuse, military repression, and the inadequate treatment of ethnic minorities in Myanmar by introducing new perspectives to make sense of social and personal relations.


The following transcript, edited from a conversation that took place on the occasion of Cappuccino in Exile, is being released ahead of the Kathmandu Triennale (11 February–11 March 2022), in which Yawnghwe is participating, with a focus on cultural narratives from communities that have undergone internal colonisation.

Read more at Ocula.