AYE : Across Sarawak and Scotland, a solo exhibition by Iona Danald

AYE : Across Sarawak and Scotland, a solo exhibition by Iona Danald

AYE : Across Sarawak and Scotland is the first solo exhibition by Sarawakian artist Iona Danald subsequent to winning the Spotlight 2019 competition by Penang Art District. Named after a common word spoken in the Bidayuh language, and characteristic in the Scottish dialect, ‘Aye’ is used to express an affirmation, an agreement, and for Iona a recognition of familial bonds. AYE reflects both an intertwining and crossroads of Iona’s mixed heritage and cultural up-bringing as she currently continues to traverse across Malaysia and Scotland.

Consisting of textural works which include her Grandmother’s textile remnants from her handbag-making business, Jimmy Macdonald’s family kilt, traditional Bidayuh bells, and vintage wool collected from charity shops, the exhibition presents a personal narrative of warm memories in shaping one’s identity, brought forward through experiences in shaping an understanding of self. A self-taught textile artist, Iona’s consideration of textiles and materials are uninhibited and largely expressive; a parallel to the artist in person. ‘Aye, this is me’.

Curated by Sharmin Parameswaran

Exhibition dates: 8 August to 8 September 2020

(Grandmother and Grandfather’s Little Farm Hut)


Identifying as Bidayuh and working primarily with textile, Danald’s work is an exploration of femininity, mental health and recovery. Trained in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, Danald left her role as a Research & Development Engineer in 2017 to focus on her mental health. Through her journey of recovery, Danald rediscovered her initial life’s dedication – her commitment to working with the less fortunate and people with disabilities through visual arts. She helped adults with disabilities and taught art therapy during her residency at Asia Community Services’ Stepping Stone, Penang, and volunteered to teach remedial classes at St Mary’s Primary School, Kuching, in 2019. Currently, she’s an art teacher at Mont Kiara, Kuala Lumpur.

Danald is the Winner of Spotlight 2019 by Penang Art District and Malaysia Emerging Artist Award Finalist 2019. She has participated in numerous group exhibitions in Kuching, Penang and Kuala Lumpur. AYE : Across Sarawak and Scotland is her first solo exhibition.