Chinese artist Li Jin's new Sydney show draws on universal joys of life

Source: Xinhua| 2020-11-06 13:48:46|Editor: huaxia

SYDNEY, Nov. 6 (Xinhua) -- Drunken monks, delectable foods, flirtatious acts and a quirky cast of characters all feature in the works of Chinese artist Li Jin, which went on display in Sydney in a landmark solo exhibition beginning Thursday afternoon.

Titled, To Live [It Up], the exhibition features both new and old works by Li, who at 62 says the name is an apt description of his paintings.

"My artistic creation has actually been about this theme for a couple of years but I didn't realize it," Li told Xinhua via video chat from his Beijing studio.

With the pressures of COVID-19 on everyday life this year, Li said that the pandemic had naturally crept into his work, however he explained he wanted to overcome some of the tension by injecting humour and joie de vivre as well.

"Some people including the artists may feel down, but I still have the passion and enthusiasm to create, to draw, for the exhibition and I hope to put something positive in my works, something to make people feel some comfort," he said.

The exhibition was curated by renowned local art critic, John McDonald, who having known Li Jin professionally and personally for several years agreed to the collaboration.

McDonald explained that Li's works have proved exceptionally popular in Australia, partly he believes due to their playful, humorous and sometimes hedonistic themes which transcend international boundaries.

Although they are most obviously Chinese in subject and texture, there are also hints of western style in Li's works which may contribute to the Australian audience's engagement.

"Though the ink painting is a traditional Chinese art style, training and education on skills and techniques of painting I received through school and college are from the west," Li said.

"So probably when western people see my works, it would be easier for them to understand it than those very traditional Chinese ink paintings."

The exhibition runs from Nov. 5- Dec. 12 at Vermillion Gallery in Sydney. Enditem