Pangolin London's Sculptor in Residence: Hannah Lim

Kindly supported by the PJLF Arts Fund
Pangolin London is delighted to announce the recipient of the Pangolin London Sculpture Residency award, 24-year-old sculptor Hannah Lim.

Kindly supported by the PJLF Arts Fund, the bi-annual residency aims to support young and recently graduated sculptors. As well as a monthly stipend towards studio costs, the residency also provides a casting budget to be used at Pangolin Editions Foundry, and the chance to put forward an exhibition proposal for a show at Pangolin London.

Hannah Lim's solo show at the gallery is currently scheduled for early 2024.
“Consciously reclaiming” the aesthetic of 18th century Chinoiserie in electric hues, Hannah Lim’s sculpture reimagines Orientalist iconography with a rich mythology of her own making. From her snuff bottle series to her large scale pieces of furniture, Lim's work is highly detailed – blurring the lines between ornament and function.

Of Singaporean and British heritage, Lim’s sculpture takes on autobiographic function as, in her own words, her sculpture “[is] representative of [her] own experience as someone who is mixed race, sitting and balancing myself between two/three different cultures.” For Lim, Chinoiserie offered a site to explore the interaction between British and Chinese culture – revising history so that "cultural designs are shared as opposed to appropriated."


Lim's practice, heavily informed by her research and critical reading, has most recently drawn from Anne Anlin Cheng’s Ornamentalism, a feminist theory centring East Asian and South East Asian women. Cheng links Orientalism with the history of ornament, demonstrating how this specifically has been tied to representations of East Asian and South East Asian women. This text has furthered Lim's desire to embrace the aesthetic in her own work, using 'ornament' in her sculptures as a way of defining her own identity.  

Whilst commenting on global historical and political currents, Lim's work remains deeply intimate – sometimes stamping works with her namesake chop and incorporating personal symbols such as her grandmother’s jade necklace. Lim's work thus balances her exploration of her family history with her critical research, utilising both to drive forward the overarching goals of her project.


After completing her undergraduate degree in BA Sculpture at the University of Edinburgh, Lim continued to study an MFA in Fine Art at the Ruskin School of Art, University of Oxford. Lim has previously received the Bloomberg New Contemporaries award (2021) as well as a commission by the Tate for Women’s History Month (2022). Her work has been exhibited by the Royal Scottish Academy, Christies, and Commonage Projects. She is currently exhibiting at Edinburgh Printmakers in her solo show, Ornamental Mythologies, until 20 November 2022.

October 17, 2022