Artists you should collect – LAN ZHENGHUI

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Born in 1959 in Sichuan, China, Lan Zhenghui graduated from Sichuan Fine Arts Institute in 1987. He currently lives and works in Beijing, China. 

Lan Zhenghui‘s monumental paintings and striking use of black ink reflect his constant pursuit of expression and feeling. His works are ’emotional bursts on paper’ characterized by an abstract ink-splash style. Influenced by his background in science, Lan’s aesthetic moves deftly between the realms of the rational and irrational. His brushstrokes are created by systemic body movements, which contribute to the visual and spiritual impact of the works with the swelling of muscle, blood, and physical power. 

Lan’s style has been termed ‘heavy ink’ by art critic Liu Xiaochun for the grandiose scale of his works and the weight of power and spirit within them. Lan puts great emphasis on brush movements, which make his characters come alive beyond classical form. His practice is an aesthetic coalescence of traditional Chinese ink painting and Western abstract expressionism, with Chinese iconography haunting the dynamic shapes and bold strokes—the naturalistic allusions to mountains, rivers, and storms surge and fade dramatically to create an immersive splendour of intense emotion. In 2000, he launched a ‘power brush’ movement with some of his fellow artists to promote the natural sense of motion and power in ink brush and oppose contrived methods of expression. 

Lan’s recent solo exhibitions include Re-thINK (2017), Salotto Gallery in conjunction with Ethan Cohen Gallery, Basel, Switzerland; Re-thINK Ink: Landscape (2016), Ethan Cohen Gallery, New York City, USA; Lan Zhenghui Solo Exhibition(2015), Galerie du Monde, Hong Kong; and Color Extending (2014), Canadian Fine Arts Gallery, Toronto, Canada. Hewas awarded a Visual Artists grant by the Ontario Arts Council in 2006. His works have been collected by the RubellFamily Collection, USA; the British Consulate General Guangzhou; the Consulate General of the Federal Republic ofGermany in Guangzhou; National Art Museum of China, Beijing; the Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou; ChinaSongzhuang Ink Painting League, China; Florida Gulf Coast University, USA; and the Chinese Cultural Centre of GreaterToronto, Canada. 

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