chinese contemporary art
Artists >> Zhou Nan

Zhou Nanís recent paintings capture the eclecticism prevalent in contemporary Chinese art circles. These are paintings which could only come from the present day Chinese art scene. It is a scene where artistic trends and ideas from the world over are mingling, interacting and contributing to innovative works of art. There is a unbridled creative freedom feeding on this exchange and dialogue.

In Zhou Nanís works one sees the references to traditional Chinese landscape painting, works of extreme subtlety incorporating image and text, abbreviated poetry in the case of Zhou Nanís creations. The Chinese tradition. although admired, was essentially untouched by the artists of the first generation, older than Zhou Nan, but she has brought it back to painting in a new role by subjecting it to more contemporary forms of expression.

There are also clear references to the paintings of Marlene Dumas - the disturbing disintegration of the image, of beauty combined with foreboding, serenity becoming agitation. The influence of Dumas is revealed in the handling of the landscape and figures equally.

The third element is the influence of cartoons which has appeared in the work of many young Chinese artists in recent years. The exaggerated features, large eyes for example, and the sweetness of the imagery come from cartoons. The use of the cartoon elements provides an excellent foil for the more disturbing factors present in these paintings. The outcome is works of gaiety, serenity and disquiet.