On May 15, 2002 Variations of Ink - Abstract Ink Painting of Five Chinese Artists will open at Chambers Fine Art. Organized by Wu Hung ( Harrie A.Vanderstappen Distinguished Service Professor of Chinese Art History at the University of Chicago) this exhibition is conceived as a series of variations on the theme of "ink," the fundamental material in the long history of Chinese paintings. Made from pine paste and glue and formed into sticks, this substance was used in diluted form and applied with a brush to xuan paper not only for calligraphy but also for landscapes and figure subjects.
As a symbol of traditional values, this venerable technique is still deeply meaningful to the Chinese, and the five artists in this exhibition show great respect for its cultural associations while developing hitherto unknown expressive possibilities. Their works, even though contemporary in nature and sometimes employing other materials and techniques, are profoundly indebted to traditional ink painting.
Although widely different in personality, the five artists in the exhibition - Yang Jiechang, Chen Guanwu, Chen Xinmao, Wang Tiande and Zhang Jianjun - favor abstract imagery that is boldly expressive and frequently monumental in scale.
Seeking to demonstrate the expressive potential of "ink," Wu Hung has selected work that ranges from the site-specific installations of Zhang Jianjun, to the muscular non-specific calligraphy of Yang Jiechang and the more nuanced approach of Chen Xinmao and Wang Tiande, both of whom live in Shanghai.
As noted by Wu Hung: "The Chambers Fine Art exhibition will be an occasion to deepen awareness of an important aspect of contemporary art in China, traditional by pedigree but revolutionary in its aspirations."
展出的艺术家分别是杨诘苍、陈心懋、王天德、张健君和陈光武。在艺术表现上，他们都运用抽象语言，创作出大规模的艺术作品。为了展示水墨中强劲的艺术张力，巫鸿挑选了各种不同形式的水墨作品。其中有张健君根据展览场地特别创作的装置作品，杨诘苍创作的强健的 无意义 书法，以及两位居住于上海的艺术家 - 陈心懋和王天德的作品等。巫鸿教授指出前波画廊的《水墨变奏曲》将会加深大众对于中国现代艺术，特别是承袭传统和灵感创新二者之间的有机联系的了解。