ARTIST BIO::: :::
(b.1976, Qi Baicheng)
Qi Baicheng has been passionate about art ever since he was a child. While originally influenced by modern European expressionists such as Wilhelm de Kooning and Anslem Kiefer, Qi found that he had to create his own style of painting, as the western approach was not enough for him to portray his personal vision of the world.
The uniqueness of Qi's work displays itself most obviously in his thematic choices and the artistic techniques he employs in their expression. While we see a rise in the painting of hands in contemporary Chinese contemporary art, no other artist commit to the subject as fully as Qi does. They are for him, rich in symbolic meaning for they are the means by which he seeks to investigate broader social issues. His seas of hands illustrate the image of Chinese masses, which coupled with the absence of human faces, convey a sense of oppressive anonymity.
Borrowing from the language of pop art he does away with much of the brushwork, texture and colour characteristics of traditional oil painting, while retaining much of its commitment to realism, making use of a flat, even monochromatic style. In arranging his compositions, Qi also sidesteps traditional art's preoccupation with specific, set scene, opting instead for the symbolism inherent in repetition and thus seccessfully crerates a vision one cannot hope to find in reality, constructing as he does so a unique sort of mindscape.
Qi's work are at once most undeniably modern, but also classical, and heavily conceptual. His seamless synthesis of the elements of reality and dreaming, of abstract and concrete, of realism and of expressionism provides a fresh kind of experience to the world of contemporary Chinese art.