Ink Studio is proud to present the Beijing debut of Taiwanese artist Su Huangsheng’s solo exhibition Visual-log, showcasing his recent works that demonstrate his unique approach to incorporating contemporary visual experience into traditional formats of Chinese painting.
For a young artist like Su, who grew up in the digital era, the abundance and complexity of daily visual experience become an important part of the nature of his artistic language and practice. Through accumulation, reflection and transformation, he draws materials from ordinary and trivial objects seen in the quotidian world - trees decorated with neon lights, plants with exotic colors and patterns, tree trunks with irregular textures, the muscular figure of a boxing trainer, homeless people on the street, bridges and rocks from Chinese gardens, or even a small corner of the rooftop balcony - and turns them into pictorial scenes full of oddness and estrangement.
These scenes are then interwoven into a chaotic yet coherent pictorial space through his unique approach to composition and spatial arrangement, dexterously shifting between positive and negative space or adjusting perspectives, viewing angles and distance. The final visual effect of Su’s paintings, dazzling and striking, echos exactly our daily experience in the digital era, overloaded with information and visual stimulus.
The digital era also changes the way we perceive the world around us. The figures in Su Huangsheng’s paintings are usually depicted against a dark background and with a pale skin tone executed in extremely light washes that almost seem unpainted. Without a sharp-edged contour, the shape of the figure is defined only by a soft gradation of light and dark colors, which creates a “glowing” visual effect, as if we are viewing it on the digital screen of a computer or a smart phone. This not only challenges our own visual experience and perception of a painting, but also the relationship between painted and unpainted surface in traditional ink paintings.
Using visual experience as a clue, Visual-log presents a self-narrated visual journey, unfolding through Su Huangsheng’s ink paintings his constant exploration and reflection upon the fundamental meaning of painting itself, the ink tradition and practice, as well as our daily life in the digital world today.
Curated by Tina Liu, Visual-log opens on July 25 at Ink Studio, Beijing.
About the Artist
Su Huangsheng (b. 1987 in Taoyuan, Taiwan) received his master’s degree from Taipei National University of Arts, majoring in ink painting. Su’s diverse approach to ink painting allows him to explore various medium and materials including ink, mineral pigment, acrylic, paper, silk, as well as metal foil. With a focus on the in-depth discussion of the nature of ink and painting, Su embraces both the tradition of Chinese painting and the contemporary visual language and ways of expression, depicting subjects from his daily life and native culture. Su has been nominated for the Kaohsiung Award Ink Painting (2015), Art Taipei MIT Young Artist Section (2017), and was the grantee of the Residency of Visual Art, Asian Cultural Council, New York (2019). Su currently lives and works in Taipei.
About the Curator
Tina Liu (b. 1989 in Beijing) graduated from the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU with her Master’s Degree in Art History. She is currently the Research and Media Manager at Ink Studio and has contributed to several exhibitions held by the gallery as researcher, translator and media coordinator. Visual-log is the first exhibition Liu curated at Ink Studio, Beijing.