National Art Museum of China, August 13——Contemporary fine brushwork painters Zhang Jian and Gao Qian’s joint solo exhibition made a stage pose in the National Art Museum of China (NAMOC) on August 12. As one of the “Cultural Inheritance • Artistic Strength-- Chinese National Academy of Arts -Exhibition of The Mid-Aged and Young Artists”, the show is a phased review of these two fine brushwork painters on a massive scale. Zhang Jian’s “Small Seeing Big” presents 20 strong of his works from the middle of 1990s up until present time. Gao Qian’s “Chinese Courtship” displays 15 groups of more than 30 creations during the last ten years.
Zhang Jian: Conceal in “Peach Garden”
Zhang Jian now is Deputy Head of Fine Brushwork Research Institute, Chinese National Academy of Arts. According to Zhang, “Small Seeing Big” is from the Chinese set phrase “Jian Wei Zhi Zhu” which means, from the first small beginnings one can see how things will develop. This also reflects his hope to belief to discover truth through careful observation.
The works are from Zhang’s four of his stages. Each stage is echoed with a color system. He said, “I want to present the best side of my creation during the past several decades. To gather together works that I feel are the best ones, I maneuvered quite some efforts, visited many collectors and agencies to make it possible today’s exhibition. I am satisfied with the result and hope that you will see my continuous thinking and change via this presentation.”
Zhang’s first creation phase commenced from graduation from the Academy. From the Autumn of 2001, Evening Dress, and Salute to Margaret to Xi Ren’s Secret based on Dream in the Red Mansions in 2008, the classic schema during the western Renaissance connects traditional Chinese elements crossing time and space. This individuation breakthrough in fine brushwork won Zhang’s recognition. Later, influenced by the traditional Chinese aesthetics of “detour” and “conceal,” he created works such as Out Of Focus and Blue Vacation, thinking of the life of city upstarts through conversion of falsehood and reality. After that, he conveys the sense of “hidden” beauty by using female image in wrapped silk and comes up with works such as Peach and Peach Garden, Mountain Peach and Shed in Spring Light. Though immersed with peach, they look graceful and llighthearted. His new work series Tier upon Tier, Mr. Zhang further “purified” the painting upon past basis, lines move back and forth with their own logic.
Gao Qian: Breathe a Piece of Work in “In Flower”
Gao Qian is a full time painter with Chinese National Academy of Arts. The exhibition displays representative works of her different stages: Luxury Game, Daydream, Chinese Courtship, Jade and Branch, Visiting Fairyland, Like a Dream. Ms. Gao’s works are gentle and delicate. In her works of recent years, she experimented fine brushwork with “art synaesthesia” and indicated that the inspiration of this creation method owes credit to Rousseau and hoped to achieve image transmission’s multi-possibility via “breathing one piece of work.”
Painter Xu Lei commented that “things that Gao Qian prudently traced out are probably the objects that body grieves – what are behind the remnant flower, high heel shoes, Chanel No. 5, are that they were once being pulled, being worn, enveloped by fragrance, and now flowers were gone, lingering warmth is gradually cooling down. Finally ‘she’ darts into the fire and dies in the lampshade.” It is because of this that makes Ms. Gao’s painting pitching into contemporary age from her own Chinese female perspective which also lays her inheritance of traditional Chinese painting.”
For this exhibition under discussion, she had particularly created Fish and Stone and In Flower – two centre shaft giant stele type composition work. She said that when she was with In Flower, she deliberated on Xu Xi’s Best Wish for Wealth and Rank. The way that makes the picture full and vacant forms a contrast in appearance. She hopes to discover an exhibition-driven diverse path to creation.
The exhibition is on display in Hall 4, NAMOC and will be on show till August 20, 2017 (not open to the public on Mondays).