CHU Teh-chun (Chinese-French, 1920 - 2014)
Oil on canvas
97 x 130 cm
Signed on the reverse CHU TEH-CHUN in Chinese and English, titled L'incnnu and dated 1992
Overseas Chinese Fine Arts Series II: Chu Teh-Chun, Artist Publishing Co., Taipei, 1999, color illustrated, plate 187, p. 246
The boundless universe, along with immense color gradations, the beauty of clouds and mists form a spiritual space in his paintings. Chu Teh-chun’s “landscape” comes from the scenery in his memory. In his paintings, he reinterprets the scenes he came across. The realistic scenery under his throbbing heart is masterly made with the unique characteristics of Eastern and Western paintings. He uses an abstract naturalistic way to let this distinctive cultural essence blend with each other, in order to re-emerge the beauty of life. The vigorous charm of life radiated through the light evokes the expression of transcendence that being detached from the object, or, “creating the emotion beyond the image,” as presented by the Tang Dynasty poet Tu Sikong in Twenty-Four Poems. Originally described the beauty of the poetic artistic conception and detachment, it is also a metaphor of incomparability, applying to the art of Chu Teh-chun is extremely appropriate too.
Traveling across the mountains and thousands miles of rivers, Chu Teh-chun likes to pay visits around the country, then transforms what he sees and the footsteps he walks passed into the hills and valleys in his heart, simplified them into colorful images. His abstract paintings clearly demonstrated the techniques in calligraphy he has mastered, which was first developed in his childhood. His brushstroke is equipped with the essence of Chinese landscape, his natural and flowing script gives his works a peculiar connection to ink painting. He employs the thick brush with momentum like sweeping through the majestic mountains, while the delicate fine brush is utilised just as speedy as an engine. The invigorating fun of ink and color displayed on the canvas gives Chu Teh-chun’s art a playful oriental texture. In addition to his superb techniques that hardly any Western artists can compare with, his detached landscape painting undoubtedly is full of spiritual energy.
“L’inconnu” was completed in 1992, Chu Teh-chun made full use of the vivid charm of Chinese calligraphy. The blue tone is not just limited to monochromatic color, but contains rich variations. The simplicity reveals an elegant classic blue, just like the sky at dusk. His proficient oriental calligraphy and ink techniques, along with his wisdom in the use of Western colors are clearly visible in the canvas. He has refined the interest of ink calligraphy, combining the Western oil painting with “dense, light, dry, thirst, damp, dry, swelling”, these all different stages of shades. He stacks up with a warm and strong spirit, paired with delicate and exquisite details, leading the viewers to the romantic world he portrayed in the endless gleam and brilliant colors in his paintings. The nature that Chu invisibly yet intentionally depicted also quietly attracts the viewer, the natural scenery resonates within their memory. The vigor is vivid and the ink is intensive and passionate. The thin lines are intertwined as an exquisite net, and the sense of color and composition are orchestrated as if there was a magical touch. His sophisticated, pleasant and unrestrained brushwork indeed expresses the circulation of life in nature.
Modern & Contemporary Art
Ravenel Autumn Auction 2020 Taipei
Sunday, December 6, 2020, 12:00am