Those who know me know that I am a firm believer of the universe conspiring itself in little ripples to bring us to our destiny. During the holidays I had the opportunity to view the Gardens, Art, and Commerce in Chinese Woodblock Prints exhibit at The Huntington Library (and was sad to miss the Alternative Dreams: 17th-Century Chinese Paintings from the Tsao Family Collection exhibit at LACMA by a couple of weeks) where I learned the technical side of producing Chinese art through woodblock printing. The stages are meticulously set to create what is usually one or two elemental images at most and it made me appreciate all the work and thoughtfulness that goes in to creating this particular type of art. The exhibit itself also explored the historical and cultural state of China which guided the stories and poems presented in the artwork itself.
Prior to viewing this exhibit, I had already been working on a project in the making since last fall, which marries the Chinese style of writing poems on paintings with more modern elements. Simultaneously, I had recently acquired two nudes from Roger Etienne and have fallen in love all over again with Audrey Kawasaki’s work (a love affair that spans many years now), which features some of the most provocatively alluring nude figures I have come across in my life.
There will be more on this project later, to be unveiled on Instagram, but for today, am sharing with you the work of contemporary Chinese artist, He Jiaying.
Curiosity stems in many different ways and more often than not, by just a mere glimpse of one little thing that grows into a need to satiate information. I was struck by this painting of a young Asian woman reading in solitude (featured image), by He Jiaying, and had assumed there would be more like this one. What I pleasantly uncovered was an array of traditionally styled Chinese ink wash paintings of more modern figures of Asian women, in nudity and sometimes in pairs.
Click/swipe through the slideshow to view more of He Jiaying’s muses, including ones where you’ll find his women caught with a book…