Uptown Mug #82 . Kyla Chung

Perhaps you have noticed Kyla practicing her talent and creating beautiful paintings just inside the window of Trinity Galleries at 128 Germain Street.  There, in the warm sunlight or cozy and safe from the weather outside, Kyla looks comfortable and at ease composing the most impressive paintings.  Many of her pieces will touch those who love uptown as they are depictions of the very buildings and streetscapes that no doubt inspire her from where she sits. Kyla Chung is the Artist in Residence at Trinity Galleries and we are fortunate to have her in our city and right under our nose, blessing us with her talents daily.  Kyla is fairly new to uptown, but she is loving it and we certainly love her being here.

Kyle will be having a show on November 2nd at the Saint John Arts Centre, until December 21st, an opportunity she earned along with a Saint John Arts Centre Grant last May. This show is about her ‘study’ paintings for her next big project.  (She is studying how to paint cityscapes, Saint John buildings, streets, and the mood of Saint John – quite interesting and very rich subject matter indeed.)  Kyla will be creating a current Saint John scene combined with destroyed heritage buildings which undoubtably will be emotional, moving and beautiful.

Meanwhile, please stop by to see Kyla at the Trinity Galleries in Germain Street. There is also a cute little dog, Henry.

Let’s get to know Kyla..

Where were you born/Where are you from?

I was born in South Korea, Seoul. I moved to Canada, New Brunswick in 2007 with my family. So it’s been about 11 years now.

How long have you been a part of the uptown scene?

It has been only about 10 months. My family lives in Quispamsis and I didn’t have much chance to go uptown when I was in high school. Even for about 6 months after I graduated and got back from OCAD University in Toronto, I had absolutely no idea how artistic this city is. Thankfully, Mike Wennberg who is a friend of my parents, and who is on the Board of Directors of ArtsLinkNB, told me about everything about Uptown Saint John and helped me to get in touch with many art people in this town.

Name one or two people who you look to for inspiration?

Francis Bacon, the Artist. When I was a second-year student at OCAD University, I had a chance to go to see Francis Bacon exhibition at AGO. As soon as I saw his artwork, Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion, I fell in love with his use of colour, figures, themes, scale, and everything. My artworks have been hugely influenced and changed from that point of the time. Every time I experience a slump, I search for his artworks.

And it is hard to say as an inspiration, though, Beth, the owner of the Trinity Galleries. I want to have my own gallery someday in the future and I am learning a lot from her. I like how she makes decisions without any hesitation. See how she created this ‘Artist in Residence’ job and hiring me who just got graduated from an art school!

Any pets?

I can see my future as a crazy cat lady. Unfortunately, I’ve never had a pet in my life. I will get cats once I have my own safe house with enough money to take care of my cats that I’ve already named.

What is your worst habit?

I need to sleep a lot. If I feel tired, I can sleep all day, literally like 24 hours. But I want to be a morning person.

What is your Uptown Insider Tip?

I don’t really have an Insider Tip, yet. However, I’ve been stoking the Heartbreak Boutique store on my way to work every day. Never had a chance to go in because they close earlier than our gallery. I love their unique style. Oh, and when sunset, the view from the law court/ Saint John Arts Centre is amazing. I tried to depict that beautiful colour in one of my paintings.


Find Kyla at work right inside the front window of Trinity Galleries on the corner of Germain and Princess St,  Tuesday-Saturday, until December.

Online:  kylachung.com

Trinity Galleries Link:  trinitygalleries.com

Instagram:  @kylachung

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *