his abstract paintings Hai Shuet Yeung has assimilated ideas from
Hong Kong and Taiwanese painters, but he has gone much further developing
the maturity and individuality of a master. Dr.
Anne Farrer - Curator of Chinese Paintings And Prints, British Museum,
Shuet Yeung, born in 1936 in China's Guangdong (Canton) Province,
is credited with introducing radical ideas and practices into painting.
Hai Shuet Yeung does this at a time when artistic communities in
China, Taiwan and elsewhere agonise over the future of the genres
in the new millennium.
Hai Shuet Yeung's 'crumpled paper' technique makes brushwork almost
redundant. His images challenge widely accepted notions of perspective,
composition and scale. This is very evident in his abstract paintings
which are accessible as 'landscapes', 'moonscapes' or fantastic
magnifications of minute parts. These can be viewed from unexpected
angles, sideways, upside down or even reduced into multiple independent
In his most ambitious and the biggest project so far, called Culture
5000, Hai Shuet Yeung has demonstrated a remarkable co-existence
between realism and abstraction by painting 5,339 carp on a subtle
background reminiscent of his abstract landscapes. The 201.5 metre
long and 1.5 metre wide water colour is painted on a single roll
of paper .
Shuet Yeung is a prolific painter, and has been a British resident
since 1969. Hundreds of paintings created by this Grimsby-based
artist show the progression and evolution of his style, from the
classical and scholarly, to abstract expressionist. The innovation
and complexity of the technique that is the hallmark of Culture
5000 is representative of his long career.
Shuet Yeung's work thus represents a significant point of departure
for modern painting, and not only in a Chinese context. The images
that he seems to create with wonderful ease have an astonishingly
varied vocabulary, layers of meaning and significance, and command
a universal appeal. Hai Shuet Yeung has been set apart from his
contemporaries, who are known for variations on Guohua, the traditional
Chinese painting, by endeavouring to refresh and renew media techniques,
as well as the subject matter of his painting.
images copyright ©2000 by Hai Shuet Yeung
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