With 48 impressionism works exhibited in his solo show in Yangon recently, Bhone Myat San, a 13-year-old boy, has stepped into a professional career in Myanmar.
More than 30 paintings, or about 70 percent of the works on display at the solo show at the Artist Gallery Cafe in Yangon, were collected from a show held in July at the gallery on the occasion of his 13th birthday.
When his mother was transferred to Dawei in 2020, he accompanied her and later joined a portrait painting class taught by senior artists at the campus of Dawei University.
Bhone Myat San says he has been studying painting through online courses while staying at home during the pandemic. He also joined a five-month online class about oil painting conducted by an artist in Myanmar last year.
"I envy impressionists like Monet," says Bhone Myat San, a seventh grader, while putting finishing touches on an oil painting titled Bagan's Tharabar Gate.
When his works were checked for exhibition, Khey Mar Shin, the owner of the Artist Gallery Cafe who's an artist herself, noticed that he is talented.
"He is the youngest artist to have hosted a solo show in my gallery. The event was successful," the 42-year-old artist says, adding that she also saw that the 13-year-old boy's passion for arts was higher than his peers and even stronger than some senior artists.
Ma Pale, 38, says she brought her two children to the art show so that her children can get inspiration from him.
"He is the same age as my son. I'm proud of the young artist," she says, adding that she has collected a still life of a vase with white flowers.
Aung Hein Tun, 25, an art enthusiast who visited the event, says the young artist's paintings are lively, and his painting skill as a 13-year-old is admirable.
"I had no intention to collect paintings, but I bought one after enjoying his arts," Aung Hein Tun says.
Bhone Myat San was sent to study at a private art school by his father in 2015 when he was 6.
"I thought drawing might be useful for his future career," says the 54-year-old father, Aung Myoe, who is a photographer.
The boy wasn't interested in the class at first, but soon the father noticed that his son fell in love with drawing and painting.
"I bought a chess set to play with him, but he drew the chess pieces instead of playing chess," says Aung Myoe.
Bhone Myat San says the money he got from the sales had been donated to the COVID-19 infected people who need supplemental oxygen.
"Consistency is the key to success," the young artist says.
"I want to attend a foreign language university in Myanmar because I have a dream of studying arts abroad," he adds.