Asian Art by Tin Ly Arrives in the Gallery on February 18th

Art Gallery 21 Presents Traditional Chinese Artist’s Tools Re-Examined By Tin Ly in Wilton Manors Local Neighborhood Gallery

WILTON MANORS, FL –  Art Gallery 21 presents an art installation of new work by Tin Ly, titled Traditional Chinese Artist’s Tools Re-examined, in the Island City Cultural Center (600 NE 21st Court) beginning at 6 PM on Saturday, February 18th , 2023. Inspired by his childhood memories of traditional Chinese writing tools, Ly’s latest creations include clay sculptures for contemplation accompanied by a series of small water-medium paintings. “This body of work represents a fusion of the old with a new way to honor the ritual of physical and mental preparedness before making ART,” says Ly. In addition, artists Nga Nguyen and Ellen Blanco offer elements of diversity with their Asian influenced art as a complement to the exhibition.  


In its ten years of existence, Art Gallery 21’s mission has always been to shine a light on underserved artists, cultures and communities through innovative art exhibits and cultural events. “We’re excited and proud to bring this exhibit of Asian influenced art and we can’t wait for the public to become immersed in all this exhibit offers!” said Constance Ruppender, co-founder and president of Art Gallery 21. 

Art Gallery 21 is a Broward Cultural Division grant recipient and has delivered exhibits of innovative and thought-provoking art. The gallery received its first grant award in 2018 in  partnership with Old Dillard Museum with “The Quilts of Gee’s Bend” during Black History Month with a collection of unique African American quilts. With continued support, the gallery hosted “The Art of Barbie” in 2019 which drew an audience of youth, from school age children to teens, with its “selfie spots” and the combination of art and technology to create a one-of-a-kind experience being part of Barbie’s one-sixth scale world. In 2022, the gallery focused its light on local Latinex artists (adults and youth), many of whom had worked beneath the radar for far too long, with “The Art of Sensuality.” The exhibit garnered local attention as it sparked debate about censorship and community values and proved to be a catalyst for conversation among local art advocates.


With this latest art exhibit, Art Gallery 21 members discovered that right here in the island city lived an extraordinary artist of Asian descent. Upon meeting with Tin Ly, it was discovered that he is a humble and kind human being who happens to possess a talent unlike any that the gallery has seen in its history of bringing art experiences to the local community.

“I began to work with clay four years ago. In the process, I have learned the advantages and limitations of clay as an art medium. I preferred my work to be high-fired to cone 10 (in gas kiln), which produced a range of glaze-colors of subdued tonalities” Lyn said. 

As a young boy attending school in Cholon (Chinese sector of Saigon, Vietnam), Ly learned calligraphy with the simple traditional writing tools such as soft goat-hair brushes, ink stick, and ink stone.

“I was fascinated with the different effects of such simple tools and objects that could create varied writing styles of strength, nuance and vitality. How do I re-interpret and transform these writing tools to reflect the understanding of my cultural heritage?”

In this new art exhibition, Ly created a series of clay objects that transformed the traditional Chinese artist’s tools, such as paint-brush, water-dropper, brush-washer, and brush-rest into unique sculptural objects for contemplation. In addition, a series of small water-medium paintings will harmonize the exhibition.


The Island City Cultural Center, home to Art Gallery 21, is easily accessible to paid public parking and is 100% ADA compliant. The exhibit will be open free to the public Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 4 to 8 PM and Sunday from 12 to 6 PM through March 12th.  Partial funding is provided by Broward Cultural Division and none of this would be possible without the ongoing support of the City of Wilton Manors.


Established in 2012, Art Gallery 21, Inc. is a Florida-registered 501c3 non-profit organization working in partnership with Wilton Manors Leisure Services Department to bring art and cultural experiences to the Island City. Located in the Island City Cultural Center at 600 NE 21st Court in Wilton Manors, Florida, Art Gallery 21 is a volunteer-based organization. To donate to Art Gallery 21, volunteer during an event or exhibit, or for a general inquiry, please email or call/text 954.225.5488. Follow us on Facebook, Google and Instagram.

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