This time, YiArt has curated a selection of works by Chinese artists including Ho-Kan, Hsiao-Chin, Han Hsiang-ning, and Dennis Hwang. These artists moved abroad one after another in the 1960’s and 1970’s. They grew up in similar cultural backgrounds and moved in order to develop their artistic visions. The process of living, understanding, and working amongst varying cultures has made their artistic expression richer and more unique. The works bring in their energy and elements of the East, making breakthroughs on screen. The works on display this time are mainly recognizable and highly staged works so that the audience can interpret and experience these wonderful works created from overseas.
Ho-Kan, born in 1932, studied modern art in Zhongsheng Li’s studio when he was young. In 1957, he and seven other painters established the Ton Fan Group, which included Li Yuan-chia, Hao Wu, Oyan Wen-Yuen, Hsia Yan, Hsiao-Chin, Tommy Chen, and Hsiao Ming-Hsien. They mainly created innovative artistic expressions and tried to be rebellious by subverting the form of chinese painting. As a result, they were named the “Eight Great Horses” by the media. In 1964, Ho-Kan went to Italy to start his 50 year art career. In 2014, he returned to his roots and settled in Taipei.
Ho-Kan started creating surrealist works early on in his career. During his visit to Milan, he was influenced by hard edge painting and spatialism, prompting him to start his own unique style. His abstract works are calm and restrained as he creates them from his emotions, which are both rational and sensitive at the same time. His later works are simplistic and full of rich colors; his intuition is genuine when it comes to creating his works, portraying poetic imagery. He is also one of the few pioneers of geometric abstraction in Taiwan. Taipei Fine Arts Museum held a retrospective exhibition of Ho-Kan in 2016.
Hsiao-Chin was born in Shanghai in 1935 and studied sketching with Chu Teh-Chun. In the 1950’s, he studied modern art with Zhongsheng L, and organized the Ton Fan Group with members of the studio, making him a crucial figure of the school. Subsequently, he held 13 group exhibitions in Europe for the Ton Fan Group and was the first person who stayed overseas early on in the post-war period, promoting the exchange of Chinese and Western contemporary art in Europe.
After studying in Spain, he lived abroad for 40 years. He became close friends with the Argentine-Italian painter and the founder of Spatialism, Lucio Fontana during the launch of the “PUNTO International Art Movement” in Milan in 1961. Fontana has repeatedly lent her works to PUNTO International Art Movement, in order to participate in it, thus expanding the influence of this art movement. “SURYA International Art Movement” launched in 1977 and the “SHAKTI Art Movement” in 1989. As a result of these avant-garde art movements, Hsiao-Chin has become a very active international artist in both the East and the West.
The ‘Sun’ series of the 1960’s used metal plates as the base of the works, as well as acrylic paint to create the “hard edge” series of works. In the 1970’s Hsiao-Chin moved from minimalism to “Zen art” due to his growing interested in “Tao” and “Zen”. Due to the death of her daughter Samanta in 1990, he developed the series Crossing the Utmost Bounds and Beyond the Great Threshold. In addition to practicing his principles of art throughout his life, Hsiao uses Taoism and Zen philosophy to create unique and distinctive styles in abstract painting.
After returning to Taiwan in 1996, he applied to the Tainan National University of the Arts (Graduate Institute of Plastic Arts) as a full time professor of painting. After his retirement, he was awarded the “Italian Star of Solidarity” by the President of Italy. In 2000, he participated in the 7th Venice Biennial of Architecture in Italy. The main institutions are: MoMA (New York), MET, Philadelphia Museum of Art, National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art (Rome, Italy), Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei Fine Arts Museum, etc.
Born in 1939 in Chongqing, Sichuan Province, Han Hsiang-ning is a well-known Chinese-American artist and was a member of the Fifth Moon Art Group. During his creative career, he’s enjoyed experimenting with different techniques and types of media. With his artistic visions, Han went to New York alone in 1967 to pursue the new wave of international art. Influenced by Minimalism and Pop art, his style changed from abstraction to Minimalism and began using spray guns on canvas. Shortly after,「Very light series」 was created. Later, Pop Art was integrated into the streets capes of New York and images of nearby factories, and the style transitioned to the field of photo realism. He started creating large number of works that mixed visual elements of pointillism and photography. This can be seen in classic works such as〈Street sketcher〉,〈Crowd of New York〉series,〈West Broadway〉. In the 1970s, Han Hsiang-ning was selected for the “Special Exhibition of Immigrant artists in the 200 Years of the Founding of the People’s Republic of China”, held by the Hirshhorn Art Museum in Washington.
After 1985, he added digital images to his artistic style and began to create ink paintings. At the time, he used watercolor brushes and ink to create the “Huangshan” series, as well as wonderful works such as〈Imitation of Fan Kuan's Journey to Mountains and Streams〉1991 and 〈Imitation of Li Tang's Wind Map of Wanhe Pine〉1991.
His works have been exhibited in major art museums including: Musée d’Art Moderne in Paris, São Paulo Museum of Modern Art, Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo, Hirschhorn Museum in Washington, Whitney Museum in New York, Brooklyn Museum in New York, Museum of the City of New York, Museum of Fine Arts in Taipei, etc. They have also been collected in institutions such as Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, M+ in Hong Kong, private institutions in the US include: Chase Manhattan Bank Collection, Schroeder Bank Collection, Sidney & Frances Lewis Collection, Lawrence Ruben Co. Collection, etc.
Dennis Hwang, known as “Leco horse” has been drinking Coca Cola since he was young. Leco is also known as the sound that horseshoes make, making our imaginations unlimited. Born in Xiamen in 1941, his family moved to Taiwan in 1950. He studied ink painting with Huang Chun–pi and others, and later learned from Li Zhongsheng who inspired him through Surrealism and Surrealist automatism. In the early days, he used Batik and prints to create abstract surrealist works. He was also invited by the U.S. State Department to study in New York and began to paint with acrylic. It’s been more than 40 years since Dennis moved to the US and it wasn’t until 2011 that he had a chance to return to Taipei.
After being influenced by western culture, Dennis had a better understanding of it. He still feels the importance of cultural heritage, so maintains a strong Eastern style when creating his works and uses Abstract expressionism to integrate into Eastern thought. It’s known as “Oriental Matisse”. Horses, women, and landscapes are common elements used by Dennis. The colors of his works are always very vibrant and rich and he uses whatever color he wants, depending on his mood.
At the beginning, Dennis’ artistic style was minimalism and abstract and after 10 years of experimenting in New York, he began to exhibit his works. While he was in New York, he was collectively known as “The Three Musketeers” with Walasse Ting and Hilo Chen and swept to fame in Taiwan. Dennis’ artistic style is quite diverse as he doesn’t want to limit himself to any framework, nor does he deliberately hold onto traditions. This is what the artist has always hoped for his work. Dennis, who is already 81 years old, still has an abundance of creative energy. He draws everyday and looks forward to painting his best works every single day.
Opening丨2022.9.24 Sat 15:00
Venue｜5F-4, No.150, Sec.1, Heping W. Rd., Taipei.
Opening Hour丨Thur to Sat 13:00-19:00