• Date
      2017.04.15 - 05.28
    • Artist
      Ju Ting
    • Curator
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  • Images

Ju Ting: Peeling an Onion

Ju Ting’s works are strongly identifiable as oil paintings; they have the richness of oil pigment and the weighty substance of this painting material. Yet, they combine a clear feel for the sculptural in their form and texture.
When Ju Ting started out as an independent artist in 2013, she carried in her mind many of the conventions within oil painting as it has evolved in China, as well as its strong association with a certain form of ideological image. As a result, one of the characteristics that has come to define her painting is the work she does with a knife, almost in the manner of a surgeon in the precise way she carves the material, but since this is art we should say like a master engraver or sculptor. This knife-work began in a first series which saw Ju Ting use a palette knife to cut through layers of paint that had been carefully applied to the surface of the canvas, in order to create a patterned relief. These patterns were usually stripes that broke up the surface also most frequently vertically. The lines functioned as a screen that was placed over familiar images also inscribed on the surface but that were then buried in the substance of the paint leaving just a bare outline to be seen. For Ju Ting, this was a means of internalising the special characteristics of the era. More importantly, it was also a process of breaking free from conventions and moving into her own language system. By the end of 2013, the images had gone leaving only a field of lines. A new abstract language was emerging.
Four years on, this language has matured. It has changed too. In recent works, Ju Ting applies the knife not as tool for cutting through thick layers of paint, but for delicately paring away an entire skin of paint. These “skins” are then recombined in new paintings. In this way, extraordinary overlays of colour are achieved, as well as a sense of motion that is found in the fluidity of the surface texture. Ju Ting’s painting represents an exciting exploration of abstract and spatial language within the context of China today.

The exhibition runs from April 16 to May 28, 2017.

OCAT Xi'an would like to thank Star Gallery, Beijing, for assistance with Ju Ting’s project

About the Artist

Ju Ting was born in Shandong in 1983. She graduated from the print-making department with a BA in 2007, and with a masters in 2013. She lives and works in Beijing.

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