A child of Chinas 1960s Cultural Revolution, internationally renowned artist Yang Jin Long will make his American museum debut with an exhibition entitled Seizing the New World, Recent Paintings by Yang Jin Long, at the Crow Collection of Asian Art
. The exhibition opens Sat., Jan. 23 and runs through Sun., April 18, 2010. Yang Jin Longs contemporary paintings reflect his experiences since moving to the United States from China in 2006. In his most recent works, Yang has explored his new surroundings by creating vibrant, provocative and imaginative paintings.
Born and raised in China, Yang Jin Long grew up in a society that stifled creativity and forced its intellectuals and artists to be re-educated to serve as laborers in the fields and factories. Now he filters the traditions of his homeland through a Western pop sensibility, often pairing hypermodern and fabled human figures with the remains of pop culture iconography in surreal situations that defy immediate logic.
The exhibition will include eight pairs of large canvas paintings, one series depicting the Four Seasons and a second series that is a colorful exploration of futuristic figures, bright hues and celebration of good wishes and fortune. To commemorate the 2010 Year of the Tiger, a set of smaller paintings of the Chinese Zodiac also will be included in the exhibition.
Yangs work mirrors our lives: a complicated blend of cultures, traditions and creative technologies, said Amy Hofland, Director of the Crow Collection. His composition is intense, but full of messages Yang is a teacher on canvas.
Yang studied traditional Chinese painting in his native city of Zhenjiang in the early 1970s and was in the military when he began to learn about Western painting. Influenced by the formal structure in Chinese watercolors and calligraphy early in his academic career, his extensive training in traditional Chinese painting gives him great poetic depth in his approach to oil painting. Yang strived to develop a concept of working that would allow him to explore relationships between the living and the constructed.
The Seizing the New World exhibition highlights Yangs acute ability to transform his new medium to a marvelous visual feast, which brings together references to Western and Chinese art masterpieces, music, literature, science and culture. It is Yangs technical and imaginative skills that allow for his pictorial unions to succeed and speak to a broad audience on a universal and spiritual level.
After graduating college in 1985, Yang accepted the position of Director of the Art Department at Zhenjiang University in his hometown. Since 1998, Yang has exhibited internationally, has works placed in many prominent collections and has received numerous awards in China. His major international solo exhibitions include the prestigious Pacific Cultural Foundation Art Center in Taipei, Taiwan.
Christine Starkman, Asian Art Curator at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, is the guest curator for the Seizing the New World exhibition. Ms. Starkman recently opened the exhibition Your Bright Future: 12 Contemporary Artists from Korea, which runs through February 14, 2010, at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. She also is working on the new dedicated space for China and Japan, scheduled to open in early summer and winter 2010.