PHUC VAN DANG Over a course of several years, Phuc Van Dang has worked on mastering the black line, and he uses only black paint in his murals and paintings. However, this limited colour choice is not a reduction, but an intensification. Uninflected with brushstrokes or colour variation, the black paint is dense and saturated, and his almost meditative focus while working with a can of black paint and a single brush becomes a vision of being present in the moment. The black line can be seen as an interpretation of the shadows in life, within a shadow lies the past, the present and the future; if there was no shadow, there would be no light and no life. His work is an integration of painting and design into harmonious units, and he portrays human conditions, emotions and nature through visual fables, finding balance between the abstract and the image.
During his live painting events, where he completes a visual art piece as a public performance, he can engage with spectators and offer them something meaningful. Often spectators are invited to join and build their own story in extension of that of others, adding lines to the same wall or each to their own canvas, invited and inspired by Van Dang and his ability to communicate feelings and concepts.
Connection and context are essential elements in his site-specific works in the public space. Knowing where we are and what has come before is key when adding something new to a space, and this concept permeates both Van Dang's project approach and his working method. He thoroughly researches a site to learn about its location, its history, its present life and identity, and the collaboration with the place helps him understand the message he wants to share with his audience. The same thing applies to his work with products, clothing and even rocks on the beach; the importance of understanding and interpreting the history and identity of the object and transforming it into a carrier of (new) meaning.