American Born Taiwanese, b. Providence, Rhode Island 1982
Phaan Howng creates large scale paintings and immersive installations and performances that center around the Earth defensively brandishing its landscape in a post-human future. She incorporates theatrical and cinematic elements in her work to place the viewer in an idealized or satirical speculative future to encourage reflection on current environmental and ecological conditions fostered by extractive global capitalism. Her research into landscape theory, anthropology, and history grounds these interrogations of Western concepts of nature, the human, and time.
Howng’s highly theatrical works provide palatable sensibilities into more austere topics.
She teleports the viewer into a narrative in order to unravel the complex relationships
between humans and nature. Looking at horticultural histories and anthropology,
particularly those stemming from the Victorian era, which was the height of botanical
exhibitions, Howng questions mankind’s desire to manipulate, control and replicate
nature rather than just living within it.
Howng lives and works in Baltimore, Maryland. She received her BFA from Boston University and her MFA from the Mt. Royal School of Art at MICA. Her installations have been presented at institutions such as the Asian Arts and Culture Center at Towson University in Maryland, MoCA Arlington in Virginia, the Baltimore Museum of Art in Maryland and Smithsonian Arts in Washington, D.C. She has completed multiple large-scale commissions for Facebook and American Express, and her work has been featured in notable publications such as The New York Times T List, The American Scholar, Bmore Art Magazine, and Artnet.