Tang Contemporary Art Bangkok is proud to announce the opening of a new group exhibition on June 23 entitled “Brushwork and True Feeling.” Curated by noted mainland Chinese curator Dai Zhuoqun, this exhibition features important works by eight key Chinese contemporary painters: Chen Yujun, Tang Yongxiang, Ma Ke, Qin Qi, Xu Xiaoguo, Xue Feng, Yin Chaoyu, and Zhang Yexing. The exhibition will present recent Chinese contemporary painting to Southeast Asia.
The distinctive quality of every painting is often the immediate reflection of the painter’s particular understanding of art and his physical and mental state in a specific time and place. In “Brushwork and True Feeling,” painting is delivered to the viewer in an exhibition. By looking, viewers enter a painter’s creation in reverse, glimpsing the idea in his heart through the visible strokes of the brush.
In confronting every painting, seeing figures full of divergent emotion and complexity is, for any viewer, like rashly charging into an obstacle-laden labyrinth. We need to steel our nerves, attempting to decipher and understand the clues hidden behind the image. The image may be chaotic and mixed, with layers of barriers, but the artist conceiving of the idea and moving the brush is itself a labyrinth. The artist moves in circles, wavering; sometimes merry, sometimes anxious, he moves forward and backward simultaneously, conveying true feeling with a heavy heart.
Whether beginning with figures or working in an abstract mode, the basic elements in a painting—points and lines, brushwork and structure, form and color, and even narrative content—represent the painter’s internalization and introspection of his ideas and experiences.
With what the eye sees, the viewer can only explore a way to access the artist through the surface of the image. Following the brush in his hand, the painter proceeds step by step to awaken his visual experience, studying and judging the skilled craftsmanship of the painting before our eyes. In spanning an eternal chasm between viewing and creating, all feedback from the viewer implies a misunderstanding of the creator; the gate of looking opens to the path of divergent emotions.
The path of divergent emotions encompasses the viewer’s misreading, as well as the creator’s misreading of himself. Painters and the ideas in their paintings are subjects and objects of subjective desire; a paradoxical topological relationship will always exist between creators and their aesthetic subjects. The subject constantly approaches the object, but it is always visible but never attainable, an object that can never be reached.
For painters, the ideal state is the unity of heart and idea and the unity of idea and brush. The brush sees with the spirit, but where does the spirit live? Shi Tao wrote, “The establishment of this one-stroke method creates a method out of no-method, and a method which covers all method. All painting comes from an understanding mind.” From brushwork to true feeling, the way of painting is the way of viewing.
Ma Ke Youth No. 3 Oil on Canvas 200 x 150 cm 2010
Ma Ke Lion and Horse Oil on Canvas 200 x 150 cm 2014
Chen Yujun Asia Map No.180228 Paper collage on silk 244.5 × 126.5 cm 2018
Qin Qi Ye Qun Oil on Canvas 300 x 750 cm 2016
Curator: Dai Zhuoqun
Dai Zhuoqun, independent curator, art critic, lives and works in Beijing. He was the founder of Contemporary Art Magazine in 2007, served as editor and art director. In 2009, Dai launched and jointly organized the "Warm Winter Plan"--Beijing safeguard art rights, which became one of the most significant art events in recent years. He cooperates with a number of art institutions, colleges and Museums of fine arts, planning exhibitions and giving lectures. Meanwhile, he frequently writes for domestic and international professional journals and publications. The exhibitions he curated includes: "Game", "The Awakening of Things" ,Beijing Whitebox Art Center, 2011, "Superfluous Things" series projects, Beijing Hive Center for Contemporary Art, 2013, "Old Stuff" Beijing Yang Gallery, 2013, " Conscious: Twelve Views On Painting" Tang Contemporary Art Center, 2014, "Civilization" series projects, OCAT Contemporary Art Center in Xi'an, 2014, Museum of Hubei Institute of Fine Arts, 2015,"Conceptual Symbols, The Dimensions of Language and Form", Poly Gallery, HK, 2015,"Dissensus Agitation: The Painting to Language", Today Art Museum, 2016, "MIC/MAC", A2Z Gallery, Paris, 2016.
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