Alvin Luong fabricates personas and stories that integrate personal biography with historical narratives and contemporary events. These personas and stories are conveyed through photography, video, and installation. Luong’s artworks are positioned between reality and fiction, familiar and foreign, and humorous and tragic. The artworks reflect on moments of comedy, profoundness, and absurdity from life under various conditions of governance, culture, and economics.
Key influences in the artist’s work include the artist’s biography of being a descendant of refugees, living in the West as an Overseas Chinese, and a passion for economic justice. Luong’s work is unabashedly entertaining which is a characteristic emulated from how marketing agencies appeal to the masses, how celebrities resonate with emotions, and how politicians can awaken a sense of pride and duty. These characteristics are harnessed to create dialogue with issues such as urbanization, climate, and war.
Alvin Luong lives and works in Toronto, Canada.
Alvin Luong’s artistic practice is inseparable from work as a community builder. Luong is a strong advocate and supporter of grassroots communities for artistic and cultural autonomy. The artist has developed a free photography residency for underserved youth in Toronto, and now serves as co-director and curator for Bunker2 Contemporary Art Container, an experimental not-for-profit art gallery dedicated to showing emerging and under-presented artists. Luong believes that being an artist extends beyond the production of artworks, but also to the care of communities that can let artistic work thrive.
In 2016 Luong completed a BA (Hons.) from the University of Toronto, graduating with High Distinction and awarded the Registrars’ Graduation Award in the Humanities for achieving the highest standing in the field of Humanities within the class of 2016. Throughout his tenure at University of Toronto, Luong was twice awarded the John Wolfe McColl Memorial Award in Fine Art for outstanding academic performance. In 2017, Luong was awarded the OCAD University Off Screen Award for best New Media installation in the 2017 Images Festival. In September 2018, Luong will be artist-in-residence at Inside-Out Art Museum, Beijing, China.