Eddie Sung’s gallery is his Bohemian Bunker, a hideaway in which to indulge his obsession with rock music and his love for large format photography.
Located on the second floor of One Commonwealth, Monochrome & His Coloured Cousins is a photo gallery created entirely by lensman Eddie Sung to display his large format prints and a home for the curios he has collected over the years. Monochrome has since morphed into an enclave for friends and like-minded artists to chill out to good music while being stared down by the likes of George Harrison, Janis Joplin, Slip Knot and Bob Dylan. “This is my Bohemian Bunker” says Eddie with a grin. “I come here to immerse myself in music.”
Not many artists get to open their own galleries. But Eddie’s journey is not typical. A successful career in management consultancy followed by some astute investments allowed him the privilege of retiring at 44. Now 56, the photographer has spent the last decade or so pursuing his dream.
“I’d invested well in property so I could retire at 44 to pursue my art. In that sense, I’m not your typical starving artist,” he adds. “So I bought my first DLSR and went to shoot my first concert, a concert by Steve Vai. Even today, the joy for me is being able to get photo access to visiting rock stars.”
And for Eddie, this usually means an “ACCESS ALL AREAS” pass that allows him to photograph the artists on stage, backstage, and sometimes, even in their dressing rooms. Working in such close quarters, it’s no surprise that friendships are formed. In 2010, Eddie documented veteran rockers Blondie as they were recording their album Panic of Girls in Woodstock. Seven of his photos made it onto the CD artwork of the album. More recently, he came under the wing of an established New York-based art gallery, Morrison Hotel Gallery. “That’s an important milestone, to be represented by a gallery as established as Morrison Hotel. Whether my photos fly off the shelf or not, that’s not so important,” he says. The gallery will be holding an exhibition of Eddie’s photos this May.
This combination of photography and rock music is what fuels his artistic flames. In the age of the MP3, Eddie admits to a fondness for old school CDs: “I love to see the artwork and photographs on the CD sleeves. I’ve had my photos used by Blondie, the Beach Boys and Slipknot, and it was great to have been able to work with the artists on these projects.”
Eddie likes the reliability and quality afforded by his one-year-old Canon 5D MKIII, his current camera of choice, but admits that most of the work he is proud off came off his Canon 1DMKII. Yet like most accomplished photographers though, Eddie seems remarkably cavalier about the tools of his trade, preferring to focus on the software. “Art is about interpreting the mind, photography is about interpreting an event,” he explains, “The way I setup for the shot, the angle, the lens, the aperture…that’s my interpretation of the event, or of the person. The lens is the paintbrush.”
For more information, visit www.eddie-sung.com.