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Variations of Ink: Abstract Ink Paintings of Five Chinese Artists

Participanting Artists: Yang Jiechang, Chen Guanwu, Chen Xinmao, Wang Tiande and Zhang Jianjun


May 15 – June 29, 2002

Chen Xinmao, History Book Series
Chen Xinmao
History Book Series
Ink and color on newsprint, mounted on board
18 7/8 x 18 7/8 in (48 x 48 cm)
Wang Tiande 王天德\

Wang Tiande 王天德\
Chinese Garment

Xuan paper, copper powder, burn marks 宣纸, 墨, 铜粉, 焰
67 x 35 1/2 in (170 x 90 cm)

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."

*Catalogue Available


水墨在中国的传统艺术中有着悠久的历史,水墨技艺是中国传统文化的象徵,对中国人来说一直有着特殊而神圣的意义。参与这次《水墨变奏曲》展览的艺术家们,藉由艺术创作表达了他们对这一古老文化的崇敬,同时也在他们的作品中展现了这一古老文化的无穷生命力。他们对传统的水墨艺术进行了大胆的尝试,甚至使用了截然不同的材料和手法,但其艺术作品始终都 和传统的表现形式有着密不可分的联系。

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。


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