Auction | China Guardian (HK) Auctions Co., Ltd.
2015 Autumn Auctions
20th Century and Contemporary Chinese Art

A Turbaned Woman

Oil on canvas

53 x 41 cm.20 7/8 x 16 1/8 in.

Signed in Chinese and dated 1991.4 on lower right

LITERATURE Timezone8,Beijing,China,Zhou Chunya,2010,p.116-117.

Zhou Chunya b. 1955

“Nude Female” created by Zhou Chunya in 1995,is one of his excellent work among “Human Body Series.” Both Human Body series and Rock series were the most representative of Zhou Chunya in the 1990s. When mentioning about this series,he expressed his desire to paint human figures and each figure in the canvas is depicted from a specific model. Nonetheless he was already exposed to Chinese painting and inevitably used the concept of line,he “hides specific image in random brushes,constructing shapes while deconstructing forms.”

In view of the overall effects of this painting,only chaotic and unclear black tones were added to the canvas at first,which then gradually developed into the shape of a human body. The lines went into continual exploration during sketching while the overlapping touches repeatedly appear in the seeming existing routine,which was rendered through the wrinkling technique in traditional landscape painting with rhythm and layers. Color blocks,unpredictable tangling and crossing of lines on the image appear in a fuzzy area without signs,leading various visual elements covered by the ambient chaos and the subtle status of the image presented between specific and abstract conditions.

The image created by Zhou Chunya aims to convey the brave and mystic erotic ambience to the viewer. He wants to disclose the “ongoing” contemporary symptom in the psychological and spiritual status through “one bold and adventurous attempt – using this classic mode to convey a violent and even erotic implication.” Because of this,the paintings by Zhou during this period are deemed as the preliminary exploration of artistic language in the history of contemporary Chinese art.

Zhou Chunya completed the study from Germany in 1989 and started new art exploration in 1990. Zhou’s strong desire to thoroughly explore humanity and to establish his own art language has driven him to revisit Tibet,where he visited at the beginning of his art career. “A Turbaned Woman” is one of the Tibetan portraits created by the artist. This painting shows significant differences compared to his paintings with the same topics in the 80s in terms of expression and skills. This shows the influence of German Neo-Expressionism on Zhou Chunya,blended with the profound impact of traditional Chinese paintings on the artist. For this reson,the works from this period collectively reflects the development and turning points in Zhou’s creations,which is particularly important for his later career.

“A Turbaned Woman” extends Zhou’s exploration in portraits since Germany,which overthrowed the passion and extensive human nature but blended with multiple-layer rendering in the expressionism techniques. Zhou intentionally enhances the head of the portrait by using the complex structure of the face without emotion and with blank to highlight the rich colors. The comprehensive image of the painting is rich in stimulation and reflects the mysterious symbolism and German Neo-Expressionism. On the other hand,such special rendering shows Zhou’s study in Song and Yuan Dynasty landscape. The surface is filled with the rich materiality created by stacking lithopone powder with latex,originated in 1990. Such feature reflects the landing of Western painting language in China and the efforts of artist in exploring the artistic language with independent value. “Rock series” was Zhou’s initial exploration for an international language,which later became the key art language for Zhou Chunya in the 1990s.

Price estimate:
HKD:680,000 - 880,000
USD:87,720 - 113,500

Auction Result:



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