Past Exhibition

Tracing the Brush: Transformed Text — Selected works from Ink Asia

20 Jan - 13 Feb  |  2016
Chu ChuGu GanLuo Qi Wang DonglingWang TiandeWei LigangFung Ming-chipVerdier FabienneYang Jiechang
To celebrate the inauguration of Ink Asia, Alisan Fine Arts is pleased to present “Tracing the Brush: Transformed Text”, a curated selection of calligraphic works by Chu Chu, Fabienne Verdier, Fung Ming-chip, Gu Gan, Wang Dongling, Wang Tiande, Wei Ligang and Yang Jiechang. In choosing the theme for this new art fair, Director Daphne King Yao seeks to examine position of calligraphy in Chinese contemporary ink painting and which trends have gained recognition.

Recognized as an art form in the first century, Chinese calligraphy has a long and hallowed tradition serving as an integral part of art and society. The elevated status and basis of calligraphy is attributed to its functional purpose: as a tool in the formation and promulgation of ideas through written characters. Scholars engraved works with elegiac poems in caoshu script (cursive script), while court scribes in neat lishu script recorded their emperor’s edicts and codified their authority. However as Maxwell K. Hearn, Douglas Dillon Chairman of the Department of Asian Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, notes, “calligraphy possesses an intrinsically graphic nature that exists independently of its lexical function.”

Between these artists exist the traces of a tradition and civilization, leaving behind the tangible signs of feelings and expressions on paper. While some favour a complete break away from the rigorous and rigid rules they believe to constrain traditional calligraphy, others have recognized that our concept of tradition is ever changing. So they seek a new format, a new expressive modality, creating works that reify and deconstruct calligraphy, and ultimately transforming this text.