ZHUANG HONG YI
1 June – 9 September 2012
Aria art gallery in collaboration with White Room Positano is proud to present the new work of Zhuang Hong Yi, author of internationally recognised artistic relevance, whose work moves with a fusion of ying and yang material, recalls the ancient Chinese tradition with a spirit of aesthetic western modernity.
Zhuang Hong Yi is a contemporary artist who represents beauty and elegance to a high level of perfection. In his style you can recognize the characteristics of the Chinese cultural background elegantly combined with a strong western allure, as a result of his upbringing and education in China at the Sichuan Fine Art Institute, combined with his international experience since 1992, when he moved to the Netherlands to the Minerva Academy of Visual Arts, where he settled with his wife Luluo, who is also an artist.
He took this path after completing his studies in post-Mao China where strong signs of change could be felt, but society continued to be torn between hope and fear, between tradition and modernity, where artistic training could not deviate much from the traditional rules of the academy. Zhuang felt himself strongly attracted by the western world, where he pursued an independent artistic career to express himself in the most individual way, turning to Europe where at the time contemporary art was more interesting and authentic compared to China where, even though it may seem strange, buyers requested more traditional goods and for that reason the traditional products were more “commercial”. Therefore what he sought in Europe was not a new ideology but rather the mental freedom to produce works according to his pure expressive energy, to build a career based on the traditions of his native country, now shaped by the meanings of colors and materials, analyzing the space separating form from content; as a visual artist, he believes that the aesthetic power is the most powerful, basing himself on the belief that the expressiveness of images begins with their appeal.
After many years living in Europe, Zhuang has not weakened his ties with China. In fact he still has his studio in Beijing, where he goes a couple of times a year to work, immersed in his culture of origin; Chinese folk art, its materials and how they are used, provide him with an inexhaustible source of inspiration to gather new ideas.
Zhuang’s paintings are often characterized by a bold and surprising mix of bright colors and are made of mysterious layers of images. All his work is attractive and seductive, his paintings turn almost into sculptures given their tridimensionality and reflect his desire to evoke in the viewer a magnetism between the tactile and the delicate floral forms, made one by one from rice paper, through vibrant colors that are mixed dynamically between texture and brightness. Renewal and tradition can so go hand in hand, in a dialogue between traditional canons and contemporary conceptualism.