April 30 – June 22, 2018
Opening Reception Sunday May 6, 4 – 6 pm
Cross Cultural Currents will showcase the work of four Chinese American artists who are also professors at four NJ-based colleges and universities. This exhibition will highlight the cultural influences on their art.
Zhiyuan Cong, Professor of Art at William Patterson University and Director of the Center for Chinese Art
Tradition is embedded in the cultural heritage of the world. For an artist to reach the peak and achieve artistic eternity, he needs to be conversant with things present and past, drawing from the best of all traditions. Nature is mother of all things and the fountain of artistic creativity. An artist should draw inspiration from nature. Only by doing so could he create art that is one with nature. An artistic perception is an artist’s direct experience of and spiritual transcendence over the universe, an individual experience and an instant equilibrium. What I pursue is art confirmed by my own life. I endeavor to draw inspiration from nature on the basis of tradition, to express my inner self, to immerse myself into my works and to achieve a new equilibrium.
Chung-Fan Chang, Assistant Professor of Art at Stockton University
Through the Kite series of painting, works on paper, video, and wall installation, Chung-Fan Chang’s work represents the Eastern influence of imaginary personal landscape that reflects issues within the society and daily life experience. “Kite” refers to the neon color fields in the abstract landscape that imply as intruders to the surrounding. Intruders cross-examine how fluorescent and artificial colors affect our vision and how that restless sensation as a metaphor of continued conflict in society. The abstract landscape calls upon the viewer to ponder, and often allows for ambiguous interpretation. The color is obsessive and disturbing, yet demonstrates authority to demand to be viewed and to attack the viewing experience. The work draws inspirations from life experience, formal Chinese ink landscape and identifies the visual simile of color and its significance in culture.
LiQin Tan, Professor of Art Rutgers University-Camden
Primitive Level Signals – This theme uses spirit levels, commonly used to indicate whether a surface is level, as a signal to illustrate a natural phenomenon in humans, where brain development is an equalized process. The competing concepts of the brain — whether the battle of the brain’s size versus its intellectual capacity, or of its technological versus its spiritual side — are always kept in equilibrium.
Jing Zhou, Associate Professor at Monmouth University
Meditation is an ancient healing method in many cultures. Inspired by nature and the Chinese culture, my digital imaging series “Ch’an Mind Zen Mind: Visual Meditations on the Ultimate Reality and Absolute Calmness” reflects my experience in search of inner peace through one of the most widely held oriental philosophies—Ch’an, also known as Zen. Ch’an’s profound wisdom/teaching and Western art inspired this project. Every image in this series carries a unique philosophical concept with different aesthetic approach. I hope to communicate to my audience Ch’an’s subtle atmosphere of Emptiness and Calmness by developing a personal visual language that expresses universal ideas. Creating this series of artwork has allowed me to explore the arts, mythology, and both Eastern and Western culture from a Ch’an perspective. I want to share this experience and hope my viewers to look at my images as if through magical windows into a healing space.
This exhibition is being presented in partnership with: