1968 Born in Chengdu
1988 – 1993 Studied at Chengdu Normal University
1993 - 1997 Studied at Sichuan Fine Arts Institute
Seit 1997 Junior -Professor of Fine Arts College of Chengdu University
2005 Study for oil painting, Art College of Sichuan University
2007 Winner of the Freemann Fundation, USA
2007 Artist in Residence, Vermont Studio Center, USA
2011 Scholarship at Washburn University & Mulvane Art Museum, USA
live in Chengdu, Sichuan, China
„Gift of the Artist“
-Dr. Julia·R·Myers (Curator of Mulvane Art Museum, USA)
When I first saw the serial works of Chinese artist Tang Zhigang that depict accidents and truths, it seemed to me that these works were totally non-objective or even highly abstracted. Only later did I realize they depicted the car crashes in different perspectives. In fact, it reminds me of some painting artists of abstract expressionist like De Kooning or Franz Kline.
What’s more, you will find more profound meanings revealed by his works with further examination and observation. In this piece of work-"Embrace in the Night", it actually depicts the scene of a car crash and a relevant large rock or a magnified oiled paper with two women in bikinis, speculating their relationship with the car, hugging each other at the lower right. Car accidents, though quite common in reality, are an extremely unusual subject in the history of art. In general, the style of the painting recalls the work of German artist Anselm Kiefer and the AmericanAbstract Expressionists of the 1940s or 1950s with their emphasis on thick paint and agile thinking attitude which drawing skills can be perceived from appearance.
But the painting resembles traditional Chinese landscapes painting even more, for example, the use of rocks and trees as landscape Chinese traditional landscape painting elements and the application of relevant methods of “ Accumulated Perspective” (cavalier perspective). In terms of this aspect, it is higher up in visual reading display structure in the further back, which is an ingenious and wise viewpoint. Also like the elevated viewpoint in Chinese painting, the
viewers look down to a smaller figures from higher place. The use of the mixture perspective and elevated viewpoint allow the viewers to see a large perspective of the landscape with appropriate distance from the landscape field. But these similar approach and disposal methods seem to distance us from the car wreck and survivors, which is similar to what we
feel in pop artist Andy Warhol's images of car wrecks from 1962 to 1964. He uses newspaper images in those works, but dilutes their gruesome nature by printing them many times in unnatural colors. Those paintings feels similar to Picasso's Guernica in which he depicts the bombing of the Spanish town Guernica by the Nazis and achieve the effects in black and white hints of newspaper lettering on the surface.
The works of Tang and abovementioned artists clearly point out the way we keep distance from the tragedies we read and perceive from newspaper. All of these work are trying to make the point that despite how considerate and affective we might be, we can never truly or totally understand the cause of the suffering of another trage dy or miserable experience.
Works in Public Ownership & Collections:
Shanghai Art Museum
Mulvane Art Museum, USA
Freemann Foundation, USA
Washburn University, USA
Chinese Artists Association
China Pastel Art Museum