Man follows the ways of earth,

Earth follows the ways of Heaven;

Heaven follows the ways of Tao;

Tao follows the ways of itself.


- Lao Tzu

Cloud in the Heaven Series:Mixed Media on Canvas


Cloud in the Heaven No.23
195x780cm
2007

 


Cloud in the Heaven No.3
195x260cm
2007

 


Cloud in the Heaven No.6
195x260cm
2007


Cloud in the Heaven No.4
195x260cm
2007

 


Cloud in the Heaven No.13
117x80cm
2007

 


Cloud in the Heaven No.5
195x260cm
2007


Cloud in the Heaven No.21
117x80cm
2007

 
Cloud in the Heaven No.18
117x80cm
2007
 

 


Cloud in the Heaven No.10
117x80cm
2007
 

 

 


Spring Story No.18
195x130cm
2008


Charm of South Series


No.15
Mixed Media
on Canvas,

100x200cm
2005

 


No.12
Art on Paper

48x83cm
2005

 


No.24
Art on Paper

43x77cm
2005


Autumn Dew Series:Ceramic Paintings


38x38cm
2008

 


39x39cm
2008

 


36x36cm
2008


The Winter Solstice Series:Art on Papar


No.2
90x67cmcm
2007

 


No.5
90x67cmcm
2007

 


No.10
90x67cmcm
2007


No.12
90x67cmcm
2007

 


No.17
90x67cmcm
2007

 


No.18
90x67cmcm
2007

 
Tang Chenghua (1964~):
Lecturer, China Central Academy of Fine Arts.
1988
BA in Oil Painting, Fujian Normal University;
1992
MA, Nagoya University of Arts Japan, scholarships of Japan Tokyo Sato International Cultural Consortium and Japan International Education Association;
1995
MA in Oil Painting, Aichi Prefecture University of Fine Arts;
2000
Further study in USA New York Hunter College;
1994 ~ 2002
Lecturer in painting, Japan NHK Cultural Centre;
2002 ~ 2005
Visiting scholar , Xi'an Academy of Fine Arts;
2006
Invited to Cambridge St. Barnabas International Print Center UK;
2007
Invited to Stifyung Insel Hombroich Neuss Studio, Germany.


Solo Exhibitions:
1995
Exhibition of Works of Tang Chenghua(Sato Museum of Art,Tokyo)
1996
The Vast & Everlasting World (China National Museum of Art)
2002 ~ 2005
Dreamland & Reality-Touring Exhibition of Tang Chenghua's Art (Gallery of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Gallery of China Xi'an Academy of Fine Arts etc.)
2006
[The Charm of the South] (Cambridge St. Barnabas Gallery., Ricefield Chinese Arts and Cultural Centre, Glasgow)
2007
Clouds in the Heaven-Tang Chenghua Solo Exhibition (Gallery of Central Academy of Fine Arts)

Works Collected by:
China Fujian Normal University, Bingxin Museum,
Central Academy of Fine Arts, Xi'an Academy of Fine Arts,
SiChuan Museum of Print Art,
Nagoya University of Arts,
Tokyo Sato Museum of Art,
Gasasa Museum of Art,
Japan Aichi International Academy,
The New York First Bank (USA),
Peru National Museum of Art,
National Taiwanese Normal University Art Museum,
GuanShanYue Museum of Art,
HuBei Academy of Fine Arts,
Cambridge St. Barnabas International Print Center,
Stifyung Insel Hombroich German,
Shaoxing Lu Xun Memorial Hall,
Fujian Museum of Art...

Amelie Gallery
Curator: Tony Chang

Tang Chenghua, who teaches at the China Central Academy of Fine Art (CAFA), has a rich international academic background as far as academics go. Having floated about between East and West for a decade, Tang Chenghua's work emphasizes the serendipity of the creation process, and shimmers with the passion of abstract expressionism and movement art. His abstract art, which straddles the divide between materials and mediums, has traces of a magnificent personal style, but Eastern culture dominates his artistic world.

Calligraphy and Ink
Thick, bold ink strokes are the backbone of Tang Chenghua's artwork, forming the foundation for a freewheeling clash between color and space. The image structure is marked by Chinese Kuangcao calligraphy, with its bizarre combinations of cursive Chinese script and empty space. The finely textured strokes sweep across the space, adding vivid and lively tones to the overall image. Vast swaths of blackness hint at an empty void, giving the picture pure power. On the other hand, the famous western abstract expressionist Willem De Kooning uses blackness as a supplement, merely a supporting role in the image.

Material Aesthetic
China has an ancient concept of the five elements, where" all things are made of earth, metal, wood, water or fire"(Guoyu --Zhengyu). The ancient Chinese concept that"all things are made of matter" reflects the simple relationship between man and nature. Artist Tang Chenghua has a keen feel for materials. His artistic language is mostly comprised of the vocabulary of printmaking; through the use of mixed canvas media, prints on handmade paper, ceramic painting and wood installations, he is attempting to reignite the spiritual properties locked inside these materials: ink brings out the shy and gentle attributes of cotton paper; wood is a mark of solidity; smooth marks on ceramic are used to express the hardness of the material; the colorful glaze is cool like the skin of a woman in water under the moonlight; the smooth fibers of linen sooth the heart, verdant fields of grain that intoxicate the eye...To Tang Chenghua, materials are an important carrier of the spiritual power and rich aesthetic in any artwork, giving subtle expression to his passion for the abstract. He has thrust open for us the gates to the world of perception.

Colors
Tang Chenghua has a preference for mineral colors. These colors made from crushed minerals have a special textural dimension that calls to mind the massive blue and green Chinese landscape paintings. Those green and blue landscapes emerged after the Warring States Period, first coming into their own in the Eastern Jin Dynasty, becoming established during the North and South Dynasties, and flourishing under the Tang. Blue-green landscape artists (such as Tang Dynasty artist Li Sixun) used mineral blues and greens to recreate verdant forests. The deep blues, bright pinks and emerald greens in Tang Chenghua's paintings are heavy and refined, like the colors of cooling magma.

Abstraction and Conception:
Compared to the subtle and vigorous abstraction of Zhao Wu-Ki, Tang Chenghua's works have hints of conceptual imagery, like looking out across the vast expanse of mountains, rivers and towering gorges, where time stands still, the landscape rolls out endlessly, and the power of nature shocks the soul. Meanwhile, his massive figurative landscapes often conceal intimate depictions of the natural world: the withering of massive lotus leaves can only be truly appreciated by taking a boat deep into the lotus pond; randomly scattered massive tree trunks are encompassed by the gentle embrace of wisteria¡­ Tang Chenghua's art preserves the intricate interplay of real and unreal from Chinese ink-splash expression within the structure and spatial depth of abstract expressionism.

The Texture of Space-Time
Tang Chenghua's art is tightly linked to seasons and regions. In a decade of academic wanderings through Britain, New York, Japan and Germany, amidst diverse cultures and the changes of the seasons, he has captured the timelessness and rapidity of the ages; one's life changes and interacts with the natural passage of the seasons, and Tang Chenghua's paintings bear the perpetual marks of time, tainted with pain of impermanence-a tangle of bitter and sweet.

The Art of Tang Chenghua
Ancient Chinese emperors such as Emperor Hanwu loved to erect bronze dew collectors on the roof of their palaces. Bronze figures held the dew collectors over their head, catching the morning dew, which would be mixed into food along with fine grains of jade to promote longevity. Yesterday's dew has been dried up by the splendor of today's sun, and through the seasons and the changing of the times, the lonely bronze men await condensation to descend from the heavens. The Book of Changes states, "the movements of the heavens are powerful; the noble man must persevere".Tang Chenghua's powerful and inspired abstract works show us the magnificence of nature, and allow us to feel the primal and fertile beauty of paper, ceramic and wood. In his seasonally changing mindscape, the clamor of the floating life is followed by the tranquility of timelessness. In the words of German poet Friedrich Holderlin, "man dwells poetically on the land".

-----------------------------------------------------------------
Form of Color: on Tang Chenghua

Dr. Beate Reifenscheid, Director of Museum Ludwig, Germany

Tang's works are special in that they impress the viewers upon first sight, with its intense confidence and self-consciousness. With this confidence he is able to produce color rhythms that transcend pure concepts (such as landscape, trees, rivers etc.) and inject a great internal power.

Just look at his paintings for a brief moment, and the viewers will be led to believe that they have been moved to a beautiful island or the lakeside, with a tree in front of them and the burning red clouds behind. Clouds in the Heaven series seek contrast between scorching red and tranquil turquoise, and interestingly, these colors that mingle with each other when the cutting black, transitional colors and that dim beige achieve the effect of independent continuation. This is the imaginative world Tang has created. Although it is absolutely abstract, just as those ancient Chinese paintings, it has the same spiritual power that informs European and American inventive paintings in the mid 20th century. This power carries the tense coherence in forms, but it is also looking for its own point of concentration: it is not a natural response, but a consciousness to seek internally, to arrange those powers, and to instill emotion into form. Though vibrated, these forces find their own rhythms and tones, finally emerging themselves with nature and universe.

-----------------------------------------------------------------Marks of Experience - Tang Chenghua's Art Works
Fan Di an, Director of China National Art Museum

In 1996, Tang Chenghua, a Chinese artist residing in Japan, held solo show at China National Art Museum, the show made a big impact with sensational abstract form and large-scale printmaking. Seven years later, his works came back again to China and were exhibited at the Gallery of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, and Tang Chenghua himself also started carrying out educational exchange activities within the Department of Printmaking.

It seems to me that the basic themes of Tang Chenghua's art are his life and cultural experiences. From Japan to the United States, he has had for a long time the "cross culture" experience. This experience is spiritual and perceptual, which effected Tang's artistic expression. Tang Chenghua's artistic sensitivity is inspired, embarking on a spiritual journey that breaks the boundary of oriental and western cultures.