Monday, December 17, 2012

2012 Shanghai Zhujiajiao Biennial Opening

International field award winners, left to right:  Anna Ivanova, Joseph Zbukvic,
Alexander Kryushyn, Ross Paterson, Dean Mitchell, Andrew Kish (not shown: Charles Reid)

I returned to Shanghai yet again in late November to join fellow judges, award winners, and guests for the 2012 Shanghai Zhujiajiao International Watercolour Biennial opening ceremonies. Besides the excitement of the event and seeing so many incredible watercolors on display, I got a chance to meet up with many friends, colleagues, and a few artists I have admired but not met until now: Anna Ivanova, Andrew Kish, Alexander Kryushyn, Dean Mitchell, Ross Paterson, Joseph Zbukvic, and of course Jo Jo and Xidan Chen, Janine Gallizia, Tony Hunt, Ong Kim Seng, Liu Yi, and too many others to name. Most all of the big names in watercolor are represented in the show, it's quite impressive.

We were all treated with a level of hospitality and respect that has become a hallmark of this exhibition. Paid flights, five-star hotel, lavish meals, and tours. There was a fantastic day in the city, another lunch in the revolving restaurant forty floors above Shanghai, Yu Gardens, and a night on the Bund. The opening ceremonies took place outside the Zhujiajiao Cultural Center where about half of the show is hung. The other half is at the Quanhua Watercolour Gallery. Buses shuttled visitors back and forth, though I unfortunately didn't have time to make it over to the gallery.

Congratulations to the sixteen award winners - eight from the international field (six pictured above) and eight from the Chinese field (see photo below). There is a fantastic catalog available from the Biennial website:

Shey-shey to the organizers for giving me the privilege to judge this unprecedented exhibition once again. Joseph Zbukvic said it perfectly in his speech on behalf of the artists when he spoke about the famous bridge of Zhujiajiao as a metaphor, illustrating the connection between East and West via the art of watercolor. We all hope to build on that, and bring the medium to new heights of awareness and critical acceptance.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Biennale de Narbonne 2012

Self Portrait: Breathe at Chapel of the Pénitents Bleus

Association Aud'Aquarelle presented the Biennale Internationale d'Aquarelle in Narbonne, France, October 3-28. The exhibition comprised the work of thirteen invited artists and a number of others who applied, spread across seven historic venues in the city. Several hundred people attended the opening, and combined with the other events, a total of 33,000 visitors.

It was very nice to see Breathe displayed in the chapel, along with five other paintings of mine. I'm sorry prior commitments prevented me from attending, but if I'm lucky enough to be invited again, I will surely be there!

The Art of Watercolour has a feature about the exhibition in the current issue, and included a photo of the chapel paintings, as well as Xin Jin #4

A huge merci beaucoup! to the Aud'Aquarelle committee, Inger and Anders Myren, Janine Gallizia, and the dozens of volunteers and sponsors (including Escoda) who made the event such a success.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

3rd Invitational International Contemporary Watermedia Masters

Jiangsu Dream shown with Cheng-Khee Chee, Katherine Chang Liu, and Chang Houxing

Many thanks to the organizers of the 3rd Invitational International Contemporary Watermedia Masters exhibtion in Nanjing, China. I'm sorry not to have been able to attend the opening, but three trips to China were all I could reasonably handle the past few months - it's a long flight! They did a very beautiful job of framing and presenting my painting, Jiangsu Dream. Special thanks to Prof. Chang Houxing for putting it all together, Cheng-Khee Chee for the invitation, and Katherine Chang Liu for including my work in her lecture.