Parallel Universes, Liu Chenyang, China


Liu Chenyang’s portraits and self-portraits are particularly effective. She can be quite bold in these works in her handling of paint without the need for too much consideration for complex composition. The rich creaminess of her impasto is often contrasted with elegant and fluid linear elements that are quite calligraphic in manner. Liu can also employ some rather audacious and surprising color combinations. The artist is equally adept at capturing a definite facial expression… personality… and mood with limited or simplified means. Liu’s work is clearly rooted in Western Modernism. Her employment of flat areas of bright color recalls Gauguin, while her bold gestural outlines suggest Edvard Munch, Egon Schiele… as well as the Chinese tradition of calligraphy.