Author: ZHOU CHUNYA 周春芽

Size: 200×250cm

Signed and dated: Painted in 2011


Final Price: RMB 6,000,000

2011 Expression of Chinese Contemporary Art / P237 / Today Art Museum
signed in Chinese & pinyin and dated 2011
2011 Expression of Chinese Contemporary Art, Today Art Museum, Beijing
2013 Leading Contemporary - AAC Award Exhibition (Art China), Today Art Museum, Beijing

Zhou Chunya is an artist constantly shaking off the shackles. In the confrontation and communication between the contemporary and the traditional, China and the west, he is always looking for fresh visual materials and form structure. From “mountain stone”,“green dog” to “peach blossom”, each series of creation proves how he breaks down the inherent pattern and order in Chinese and Western art and establishes his own visual language system. Zhou Chunya studied in Sichuan Academy of Fine Arts and Kassel Academy of Fine Arts in Germany in the 1980s. His early education made him oriented to German Expressionism Art in the way of language. After returning home, he systematically traced and studied Chinese traditional painting. At last, these two completely different artistic origins and visual traditions were perfectly integrated in his painting.
Peach blossom is the traditional theme of Chinese painting. In fine brushwork and literati ink play, peach blossom is endowed with a kind of gentle and elegant characteristic to show the intellectuals’ high self-esteem. But in Zhou Chunya’s creation, he broke the visual mode of inheriting for thousands of years, that is, he no longer expressed the light and delicate feelings, but gave peach blossom a kind of primitive vitality with bright and strong colors, thick and rough strokes and full passion. Zhou Chunya once said, “I like the things with vigorous life. When I watched peach blossom in the peach blossom mountain near Chengdu in spring, it was full of pink, flowing with the enchantment of people’s blood and made me feel the rhythm of primitive life force.” At the same time, Zhou Chunya’s picture also shows a kind of ambiguous erotic meaning. Because as the painter said, “love and lust” is the innate desire of human beings, and also the expression of pure vitality, just like the peach blossom in spring.
In the 20th century, the German expressionism painting expressed complicated inner emotions by distorting and abstracting the reality. Zhou Chunya’s artistic concept undoubtedly continued and responded to this painting tradition, not with the purpose of reappearing the objective objects truthfully, but from the subjective feelings, without avoiding the real emotions and desires. Therefore, the gorgeous peach blossom is also regarded as the carrier of passion in Zhou Chunya’s works.
Peach Blossom in Spring was created in 2011. The composition of the work is full; the color is bright and strong, simple and full of change. The painter skillfully uses all kinds of complementary color relations to make the picture full of striking contrast and rhythm, while the overall color is very uniform, with a large area of pink coming to people, giving a beautiful sense of spring. The space level of the picture is open and clear, the peach trees in the near view are luxuriant, the grass is green, the field in the middle view is winding with a stream, and there are sparse trees in the distance. Fields, streams, peach flowers and grass make up yellow, blue, pink and green color blocks, which are thin and thick, big and small, cold and warm.
The fields, streams and the distant sky are almost flat painted, giving full play to the inner tension of colors to the greatest extent. The rich and varied strokes make simple objects maintain their vividness, which is reminiscent of Landscape at Krumau by Egon Schiller. The peach blossom at close-up is not completely realistic, but is reprocessed by the painter according to his own subjective impression and understanding. The flower seems to be in the blazing light, without the quietness and implicitness of the ancient literati. Instead, it has a bold posture and dazzling light, thick strokes and bright colors to create a very powerful visual effect.