Zhang Yexing Studio Visit

Eli Zagury: When did you decide to become and artist and why?

Zhang Yexing: I should have graduated from university. I’ve always really loved painting, but because I got bad results in my English exam when graduating from high school, I wasn’t accepted into the Oil Painting Department, and majored in Animation instead. However, I still wanted to paint, so when I graduated, I didn’t go on to look for work like my course mates did, but rented a studio with a couple of other people. Although my main source of income relied on working as a substitute teacher and supervising exams, I was able to start painting independently, which made me very happy. I really enjoyed this kind of lifestyle.
应该是大学毕业,我是一直特别喜欢画画,因为高考英语成绩不好大学时就没能进油画系而是被分到了动画专业,但我还是想画画,所以毕业了也没像其他同学那样去找工作,而是和别人合租了一间工作。虽然生活的来源还主要是靠去考前班代课,但能独立的开始画画了使我很高兴。我很喜欢这种生活方式。

 

EZ: Your works look very well planned out in composition, technique and light and colour tones. Do you carefully plan your paintings, or do you follow a sketch or draft out the composition on the canvas beforehand and then carefully follow it?

ZYX: I don’t sketch very much, but I spend a long time carefully planning out each of my paintings.
我草图画的并不多,但我每张画在画之前确实会规划很长时间。

 

EZ: Interiors and patterns are some of your primary foci in your painting, are you building this painting from your imagination? Are they based on photos you shot or found images or magazines?

ZYX: I take shots myself and I am also looking for ready-made photographs, but regardless of whether I shot them myself or it’s a ready-made image, they are all carefully selected according to a selection process.
这些图片有我自己拍的,也有我找的现成的图片,但不论是自己拍的还是现成的图片它都是在我事先规划的范围内再做选择。

 

EZ: I found that the most exciting thing in your past work is the way you render light on repetitive patterns or surfaces. It can be a rag, wallpaper, wooden floor or a simple flat wall. What attract you so much to these “banal to boring” subjects?

 

ZYX: Art comes to life of its own, to the greatest extent, I usually try to pick circumstances which resemble my own life style as a starting point for my images.
艺术本身就来源于生活,我会尽量选择和我生活有关的情节做为一幅画的切入点。

 

EZ: Who are your favourite artists in Asia and the in the West?

ZYX:My favourite Asian artist is Wang Xingwei, there are many Western artists that I like, I can’t highlight one above others, they tend to change according to the stage where I am.
亚洲最喜欢的是王兴伟,西方喜欢的真是很多,就不一一举出来了,每个阶段喜欢的都不一样。


EZ:
As a young artist working in China in the aftermath of the “Boom” in contemporary art market, do you find the atmosphere around you pessimistic and gloomy? Does it affect your creation your thoughts? 

ZYX:I don’t think that the atmosphere in the art market has had a particularly strong influence on my work, or at least it doesn’t have much influence on me anymore. I am more interested in whose work is good.
我觉得艺术市场的气氛跟我做作品的关系不大,至少现在和我没太大关系,我关心的还是谁的作品好。

 

EZ: Can you tell us about the body of work you are currently working on for your show next year? From what I saw in your studio there were quite a few new things, larger work with much more details in them and even a large portrait. Are you planning to create more of them? Will you exhibit them all together?

ZYX:I am still working on my solo exhibition, I want to do a core body of work for them to be completed either this year or the next.
现在还是在认真的准备个展,今年或明年差不多时我想把它们做一个集中的展示!

 

EZ: You recently started to work with Platform China gallery, do you find it as a new home for you? Are you spending time with some of their artists?

ZYX:I think the collaboration with Platform is growing bit by bit, several of Platform China’s artists are good teachers and helpful friends, there are a few with whom we often have get-togethers.
和站台的合作我觉的是往前前进了一步,站台的好几个艺术家都是我的良师益友,有几个会经常在一起聚。

 

EZ: Which international artists have informed or inspired you?

ZYX: There are so many artists that inspired and motivated me, like Edward Hopper, Freud, etc. all had a very important impact on me.
影响和激励的艺术家真的很多,像爱德华•霍伯,弗洛伊德…等等对我影响都很大。

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