Oil on canvas
165×180 cm. 65×70 7/8 in
Stamped with one artist’s seal on upper left
27 Feb – 5 Mar 2007, Chen Xi Be Fickle in Affection, Soobin Art International, Singapore
Private Collection, Asia
A Street-Level Glimpse of People’s Attitudes Toward Life
In 1987, a confident young lady named Chen Xi was one of only a few women admitted into the Central Academy of Fine Arts （CAFA） in Beijing, where she studied in Studio No. 4 within the Department of Oil Painting. During her studies, she gradually developed a bold, independent style of expressionist painting, and in her works, she often depicts the true face of characters in secular life, which is the core of her artistic philosophy. Through her continued exploratory efforts coupled with solid painting skills and a profound insight into life itself, she has become a majorly representative female artist of Chinese contemporary art.
Self-Amusement （2001） is one of the artist’s rare large-scale works, and it has garnered significant recognition among the art market. The painting reveals a group of local residents who have gathered together and who are enjoying the pastime of “plaza dancing” （also called “square dancing”）, which is extremely popular among contemporary Chinese urban dwellers. In the work, the artist adopts a compositional style similar to the “scatter perspective” of Chinese traditional painting, rendering the expressive gestures of characters on the canvas in a narrational way. The contrastive use of saturated colors adds a relaxed, animated texture to the painting while creating the feeling of a color negative image, providing an illusion that the scene is from the distant past. The artist paints detailed into three female characters, accurately depicting the outward appearance and inner spirit of urban women of different ages and crystallizing their relentless pursuit of beauty and life in people’s collective memory of modern-day Chinese plaza dancing. With a delicate female perspective, expressionist techniques, and a style that is full of personality and boldness, Chen Xi portrays the candid self-expression of the dancers and their cheerful attitudes toward life, while similarly reflecting the artist’s own positive attitude towards life and art.
HKD: 160, 000 - 260, 000
USD: 20, 500 - 33, 300
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