|Jiang Jing's oil painting. [China Daily / Li Hongrui]|
With the passing of the 19th solar term known as the Start of Winter, the coldest season of the year is upon us.
As always, winter means blowing winds, falling leaves and a world dressed in simple black and gray.
On the streets of Beijing, only curled Chinese roses and their withered red petals can remind people of the past colorful seasons.
Yet, the colors of spring can be found once again.
They are in painter Jiang Jing's art, featured at her recent exhibition titled Lyric Suite.
On her canvases, there's a half dream and half real world. A little horse stands on flowers in a bright green world. Red colors infuse pink and rosy ones. A little girl cuddles a horse.
A dream spanning 10 years
"The exhibition includes two series -- one is about a dream, the other plants and flowers," Jiang said. "They are inspired by emotions and feelings."
In a black cashmere overcoat and gray boots, the 42 year-old painter still wore a teenage girl's shy smile when she spoke with China Daily Website.
Jiang just held her solo exhibition, Star and Moon Island, in October.
"The works displayed last month are very different from the ones here," the artist said, "They are more rational, and I used many dark colors, such as blue, black and white."
The paintings being showcased, however, are more soft and feminine, with plenty of red, pink, bright green and yellow.
According to Jiang, there is a story behind each work.
"The dream series is about a little girl's dream. The girl dreams of a little horse and they enjoy a period of happiness," the artist said.
"When she wakes up, she finds a wooden horse lying on a table. Yet compared to the horse in her dream, the wooden one looks more unreal to her."
The series about this dream took Jiang 10 years to finish.
Spring colors shine with vitality and softness
Another series about plants and flowers is also a colorful feast for the eyes.
"For this series, the two colors I used most are pinkish red and yellow-green," Jiang said.
Such colors, blended together, bring out the healthy beauty and mild character of Mother Nature.
The curator of the exhibition, Susan W. Radovic, said Jiang's paintings have a gentle quality by using nuanced colors to bring a fresh, lyrical and feminine feeling to her works.
"Jiang Jing deconstructs the patches of colors to create spaces," Radovic said. "The longer you watch the paintings, the more you become aware of the very subtle use of shapes and colors to create a special effect. It is like looking at the world with eyes half closed, like a dream picture."
Feeling good as a woman
Though such works have a strong feminine tone, Jiang said in a 2008 interview that great artists should create works without distinctive gender features.
However, when being asked if she still had the same idea now, the artist holds a different view.
"At that time, I was still young and felt confused about my gender identity, especially as a woman. I didn't want my work to be judged by my gender," Jiang said, "Now, I've become mature and feel good being a female artist."
To her, the more important thing is to paint and freely express her inner feelings.
Femininity didn't hold her back creatively. Instead it accentuates her works, as they were praised by artist Zhu Jiuyang as "expressing a spiritual sensitivity."
Like the plants and flowers that elegantly prosper in her paintings, Jiang seems to be enjoying her present life.
The artist said she looks like a tree, will never cease growing up and still feels curious about the world.
"The world is a garden that has been waiting for me to become mature," Jiang said.
If you go
November 11-30. Shang Ba Art Gallery, 1/F, Shang 8 Culture Group Building. Yard 3, Xiadianjia Chaoyang district, Beijing.
(Source: China Daily)
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