“I am very interested in mysterious culture.” - excerpt from the artist
Q: What led you to become an artist?
A: I became an artist because I was influenced by my father. He is a photographer and painter. He planted an art seed in my heart since I was a kid.
Q: Where have you studied and how long have you been an artist?
A: When I was in primary school, I started to study sketch and calligraphy in my spare time. I started to study Chinese traditional painting in middle school, and then graphic design in University. I established my art studio in Song Zhuang Artist Village in 1998, then moved to 798 Art District in 2004. I have been an artist around 20 years.
Q: Where do you derive your inspiration from?
A: I am very interested in mysterious culture. I have studied and researched Stonehenge and crop circles for many years. I tried to translate and interpret the mysterious graphics all over the world. That formed my own ideology. My inspiration comes from those thoughts.
Q: I see that you create in several genre's, to include calligraphy and film. What has led you to become so multi-faceted?
A: My art comes from traditional Chinese art education, including the classic landscapes, flowers, birds, and characters. But my paintings are not in the traditional way, my paintings combine different elements, such as light and shadow, sketch and abstract.
In China, calligraphy is same as Kongfu; both of them need to take long time to practice. All of my paintings have calligraphy elements - it is the foundation of my paintings.
My father is a photographer; when I was very young, I had the opportunity to learn how to take photos. In 1990s, I had my own digital camera, I took video and images. Those works also impact my paintings. For making a documentary, I learned how to observe my subject.
Q: What do you hope for viewers to take away from your art?
A: In recent years, I felt my art works has moved closer to the viewers. Because it gradually has human’s story and emotion. I do hope the viewers could feel that.
Q: How do you view your art career in five years?
A: In 2012, I made a very hard decision. I stopped all exhibitions and selling my paintings. From 2013-2017, I focused on practicing calligraphy. That was a tough process, but I found something new. At same time, I also did quite lot experimental on my painting;, that makes my arts in different kind styles. All creations are based on my calligraphy. It’s worth it to do this in 5 years.
To view more work from the artist, follow on Instagram @laodanrj.
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