Chinese contemporary Wuxi painting drawn from a rich history of porcelain art was brought to Sydney for the first time in November 2015. Initially shown at Gallery Klei in Sydney, the exhibition had previously successfully toured Britain, Taiwan and France. A VIP viewing was held at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney on 30 November 2015.
Whilst the history of blue and white porcelain dates back to the Tang dynasty (AD 618-907), the current exhibition adds contemporary abstract art and colour to the historical mix. The current technique of painting on porcelain sourced from the famed city of Jingdezhen, known as the capital of porcelain, has emerged only in the last thirty years.
The Wuxi Painting on Porcelain Exhibition, originally from the Quxi Qian Kiln at the Wuxi Hai Lin Culture Centre, featured 27 porcelain painted works by acclaimed Chinese painting and calligraphy artists including Wang Chao-Yong, Yang Yu-Qing and Gu Qin. Innovative young Chinese art entrepreneur Joseph Qian, 24, is the man who has brought this exhibition to Sydney. He is the General Manager of Wuxi Hailin Culture and Art Development Inc, committed to bringing the works of Wuxi porcelain artists to the world.
The majority of the pieces are by Wang Chao-Yong and demonstrate his breadth of skill, use of colour and design. It is hard to have a favourite. His Story of Spring includes shades of blue on the white with a touch of blossom, surrounding a female nude. The picture masks the layers of history showing the depiction of spring on porcelain. Another of his works uses the naked figure complementing the roundness of the bowl. He paints rich ripe coloured fruit in his Harvest Painting. This contrasts with his Lotus Painting which portrays two solitary slender plants reaching up and balancing the tall narrow neck piece. He readily utilises the blue lines to produce his Blue-White, a tumultuous maze-like Fantasy Painting.
The densest colour with glossy white blossoms appeared in Chen Ying’s famille rose Magpie on the plum tree. Chen Ying’s Flower Painting attracted much interest from viewers who commented on the fineness of the delicate petals on hard porcelain.
Gu Qin provided a number of pieces with blue white inscription painting. Yang Yu-Qing’s blue-white painting Strangers When We Meet shows a man in a tangle of vegetation making eye contact with a bird that appears slightly aggressive.
Also exhibiting are works by Shen Zi-Chun, Zhang Yun-Hua and Ye Jian-Xing, all top level artists. All boldly original and with distinctly individual style and each purposely selecting the porcelain shape to complement their brushwork and composition.
The combination of smooth porcelain shapes with contemporary painting and calligraphy which pays tribute to its historical past makes this exhibition a treat for art lovers. In Australia for a short time only.
The Shades of White Exhibition ran at Gallery Klei from the 17-28 November 2015.
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A VIP viewing was held at the Museum of Contemporary Art 30 November 2015