Lo Ch'ing Exhibition: In Conversation with the Masters to Take Place at Masterpiece, 26 June - 2 July
An exhibition, the first in London for 25 years, of 25 paintings by Lo Ch'ing - one of the most influential Chinese artists working with brush and INK on paper.
We will be happy to arrange an interview in person with the artist on 23 June, or a telephone interview in English at any time prior to this. The exhibition will take place at Masterpiece, 26 June - 2 July 2014, the entire stand devoted to 12 works by him and also at the gallery (61 Cadogan Square) with the Private View and the opportunity to meet the artist on 23 June.
Lo Ch'ing - painter, poet, calligrapher, literary essayist, art critic and charismatic lecturer, is perhaps the most eloquent living intermediary between Chinese classical culture and the revolutionary aesthetic models of expression today.
Born in Qingdao, Shandong Province, just before his parents fled with him to Taiwan where he was educated, his education included both traditional Chinese humanities and arts as well as western literature.
While internationally recognised primarily as a painter and calligrapher, his 12 published volumes of poetry and deep knowledge of Chinese classical literature, allied to his long study of - and numerous publications on - western post-modernism and literary theory, define him as a persuasive contemporary descendant of the scholar-gentleman.
Both in his poetry and his painting, which are emphatically contemporary in form and intention, he remains linked to the cultural values of the Chinese literati. The purpose of civilised man, according to this elite of scholars, was to become part of the dynamic rhythm of creation and to contribute to the coherent ordering of society. And it was through the practise of painting and poetry and calligraphy that the scholar also realised his own humanity by cultivating and developing the inner life. It has been Lo Ch'ing's purpose and achievement to carry forward this tradition through works that contain subtle references both in their titles and in their subject matter to the great narratives and myths of Chinese history, while at the same time expressing his sympathy for and grasp of international high modernism.
It is perhaps not surprising for an artist who has written poetry for children with titles like That Smelly Old Tom-Cat and The Interesting Life of a Snail that he deploys such a flexible range of subject-matter.
He is only too aware of China's growing relevance to the mainstream of world culture, but his wide culture has given him the freedom to be audacious and playful in both his unorthodox compositional structures and radical perspectives as well as in his choice of subject. These range from his own native imagery of Taiwan's palm-trees and pastoral landscapes to Californian junipers and highways, balloons and pandas, flying-saucers and colourful still-lifes.
It is this combination of Lo Ch'ing's reservoir of cultural references and his amused view of the telling contemporary detail . . . ancient and modern east and west . . . that constitutes his significance for the world of culture today.