Looking outside my window on this lovely spring day in Amsterdam, I see many trees blossoming. That makes me so happy! And I am not the only one inspired by all these flowers around me. In the work of artist Alina Tang, also known as Giant Pansy, they are all around. Time for a quick chat.
Alina Tang is an artist walking the line between printmaking, floriography and design. She uses various techniques including drawing, painting, and wall-works. Her works are bright and colourful. Both her website and Etsy shop are happy places to be.
Born in Perth, Australia, Alina always loved making things with her hands. She studied Fine Art and Design at Curtin University from 2011 – 2013. Before moving to Amsterdam, Alina managed creative studio Beau Est Mien Prints and Designs from 2011 – 2018.
Talking to Spoonful of Art, the artist explains a little something about her art practice.
I have been creative since I was young. I don’t know if it was a conscious decision, or rather a strong feeling of doing what I love. While I was studying, I started working on my own creative practice, as well as in the creative industry. It’s really my favourite thing to do and I feel really lucky!
Who are your biggest inspirational artists?
AT: I am inspired by so many things and so many people! It’s hard to choose! At the moment I’m really loving the work by these amazing women: Sophie Jackson, Jennifer Bouron, Esther Sandler. I’m inspired by beautiful colour combinations, especially including the colour pink. But I also love discovering groovy music, stores, well-designed spaces, flower shops. Or travelling to new cities, Beyonce’s music videos, meeting other artists, having great conversations, listening to other people’s love stories, seeing my friends pursue and fulfil their dreams, and so much more!
Why did you move from Australia to the Netherlands?
There’s a few reasons! I have a family connection to the Netherlands – my mum’s family fled Vietnam as refugees during the 70’s and settled in Tilburg (a town in the south of Netherlands). It became our second home as I spent a lot of time between the Netherlands and Australia growing up; visiting our relatives quite often.
I’ve always wanted to work and live in a different city, so moving to the Netherlands where I felt quite comfortable and had support of some family too, was a logical choice. And of course it’s also a beautiful place. Amsterdam is so peaceful and beautiful. It has the feeling of a big international metropolis whilst also being small enough to feel cosy and at home. It’s an amazing place with access to so many different countries within a few hours of travel, so I feel really lucky to be here and making the most of the accessibility and close proximity to other international art spaces. I love the lifestyle, eating frietjes & tompoes, riding my bike everywhere (except when it rains!).
What’s it like being an artist in the city of Amsterdam?
I find Amsterdam a really relaxed place to live, every day is different and I’m really excited to be a part of this city. It has been an incredible experience to be able to be living and immersed in the local creative community and meet wonderful people.
I’ve only been here a few months, and have been completing artist in residence programs: AGA Lab (a printmaking studio and maker space for artists and designers) over the summer of 2018, and a six month residency at Plantage Dok (a creative venue, studio warehouse, and meeting place). I’ve also been working with Angela and Aafke at Paper Brush Studio, teaching occasional workshops. They are also illustrators and now my very good friends, too!
Where can we admire your work in the nearby future?
I have an upcoming exhibition at De Werkwinkel, a beautifully curated boutique, gallery, and studio located in the Czaar Peterstraat in Amsterdam. We would love to extend a warm invitation to everyone to join the exhibition opening and collection launch on Thursday 18 April from 5 – 7pm at De Werkwinkel, Czaar Peterstraat 104, Amsterdam. You can view the event on Facebook.
The exhibition will be showing until the 4th of May.
Want to read more of these articles? Drop me a line in the comments, and I will be happy to comply. If you like illustration, maybe this post is a fun read for you.