Artist, Bayar’s solo exhibition, Red Horses of Mongolia

Mongolian artist Monkhor Erdenebayar—a.k.a. Bayar—is having his solo exhibition, Red Horses of Mongolia, at the ARTrium, MICA Building—hosted by Teo + Namfah Gallery of Bangkok. His preoccupation is with the energy of horses, which he conveys through form and color—especially red. Part of the proceeds from the sale of Bayar’s paintings will help fund an art scholarship in Mongolia. We speak to him about his works.
Why did you become an artist?
I grew interested in art as a child. I think all children like painting. After art school, I was drawn towards contemporary styles of painting. I tried these and made several abstract works, but soon realized I wasn’t as interested in this as I had thought. So I tried to find my own style, exploring widely before I found inspiration in Mongolian lifestyle and traditions.
Why red horses?
I like animals. I tried many others—even camels—but for the last 14 years I’ve been painting only horses. Red is a color that gives energy. As for horses, they connect people to nature.
Do you own horses?
Yes. I’ve had horses since I was a child. There are 11 horses per person in Mongolia.
Some say that if you look at the horse in the painting, it will look back at you. Is that true?
Well, Mongolians believe the horse is like an eight-year-old child. It can do many things and feel many emotions. But whatever the painted horse looks at depends on the viewer and how he relates to the painting.
If horses are a symbol of Mongolia, are your paintings about Mongolia as a nation?
The audience should have some feeling for the cultural origin of a work of art and anyone can guess my paintings come from Central Asia. But my art is not really concerned with giving messages.—Susaji Puranasamriddhi