UAE
ABU DHABI
Four Season AL MarYah
24TH and 25TH JANUARY 2018

Tan Ping

China
Tan Ping, Untitled, 2017
Acrylic on Canvas 80 x 60 cm
Tan Ping, Untitled, 2017
Acrylic on Canvas 40 x 50 cm
Tan Ping, Untitled, 2016
Acrylic on Canvas 220 x 300 cm
Tan Ping, Untitled, 2017
Acrylic on Canvas 60 x 80 cm
Tan Ping, Untitled, 2017
Acrylic on Canvas 60 x 80 cm

BIO

Tan Ping, born in 1960, family origin in Yantai of Shandong, graduated from the Printmaking Department of China Central Academy of Fine Arts in 1984. From 1989 to 1994, he was sponsored by Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst (DAAD) scholarship, and studied at the Department of Free Painting of Berlin University of the Arts and received Master' s Degree and Meisterschule Degree. He was a professor and the Vice President of the China Central Academy of Fine Arts. Currently he is the Vice President of Chinese National Academy of Arts. Tan Ping widely participated many group exhibitions and solo exhibitions in museums, galleries across Shanghai, Beijing, Hong Kong, US, Germany and Switzerland etc. He exhibited in Tan Ping: The Certainty of Uncertainty at Leo Gallery, Hong Kong in 2017; Tan Ping: Follow My Line at ASU Art Museum, USA in 2015; A Line-Tan Ping Solo Exhibition at National Art Museum of China, Beijing in 2012. And he joined the group exhibition Beyond Every Mountain Is Another Mountain - A Meeting of Contemporary Art From China and Switzerland at Helmhaus Museum in Switzerland in 2016. Tan Ping’s works are collected by major galleries and museums in China and abroad, including the National Art Museum of China, Shanghai Art Museum, Today Art Museum, Portland Art Museum, Museum Ludwig, Kolding Museum of Modern Art and Arizona State University Art Museum, etc. “In Tan Ping’s works, the distinctive character of the lines and the all-encompassing colour patches give rise to a sharp statement against each other. His paintings are full of uncertainties, the same way he feels towards reality. As Tan has said, science and technology today are advancing by strides, like a car piercing through the wind, the man in it blown so strongly that his face is deformed beyond recognition. The blistering pace of concept alteration and replacement has turned the human flesh into a burden, which was wholesome at first, now emitting a strong sense of tearing. Let the torn soul return to its body. Our current society is suffocating, your heart has been shielded from the light, at the same time it contains an infinite depth which draws your soul away….. to observe the world from a different perceptive. (refer to Tan Ping’s writing) The style of Tan’s painting can be traced back to Minimalism, with the influence of Barnett Newman. However, he chose to break the set rules and rationality and instilled his work with unpredictability, enthusiasm and emotional qualities. In the beginning, Tan translated the symbols of life into pure abstract, over which process he fought against the interference of objects and their forms, eventually this led him into a state of transcendence, a continual evolution of the body and character of the artwork. The colours and lines in Tan’s paintings are always entangled between the perceptual and the rational. Be it lines or the colours, the artist sees them as containers of spiritual rhythms and infinite ever-morphing forms. He strives to restore painting to its primitive state, and he uses this as a way to process the uncertainties on his canvas, in which he has to encounter the struggle of balancing the disparities between omission and concealment, fusion and diffusion, chance and control. Perhaps it is from this struggle and overlapping approach that rose his distinctive visual language. It is apparent that his visual language is built on the technique of repeated plain colouring, meaning the space of the canvas is flattened not in a uniform plane of monochromic paint, but amidst the repetitive actions comes fortuity, and the only certainty is the spatial order built up by overlapping layers of red, yellow and green. Such has allowed us to have a glimpse of the tangibles concealed beneath the abstract surface; logic seeding from the cracks of intense emotions; the force of life raging in the sea of rationality. Therefore, it is only fair to consider Tan’s paintings as absolutely flat, whilst at the same time finely three-dimensional, the latter being a product of thoughtful considerations and composition by the artist. In grand scale, his works may present as a plain screen with pure saturation of colours, or as interplay of meters-long magnificent lines, or as dispersed dots and partial delineation resembling a galactic map. Tan Ping makes every effort to reject the influence of daily-life association on the canvas he paints. Starting with interlacing lines, Tan completes his expression with overlapping colours. As time progresses, lines with strong characters continue to materialize and be concealed, and this perpetual cycle sublimates the spirituality embodied in the visible while revealing the invisible imagination of the transcendence. It tells of a multi-dimensional universe at once rational and passionate. A compelling grandeur radiates from the artist’s poetic representation; one may imagine a flow of energy with life of its own streaming in the boundless, or see an unpredictable realm of fluid colours, or be immersed in a dynamic space witnessing the vigorous burst of forms as a result of relentless tearing of living bodies.” — Dr. Huang Du (Curator and art critic; Art director of Today Art Museum; Professor at Institute for the Sociology of Sichuan Academy of Fine Arts, China.)

Leo Gallery