interview with artist zhang gong interview with artist zhang gong
jun 04, 2014

interview with artist zhang gong

zhang gong
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

zhang gong was born in 1959 in beijing, china. his work crosses the mediums of animation, photography and painting – for which he is best known. his paintings often feature cartoon characters both famous and of his own making in settings that explore art history and popular culture in both asia and the west. he currently works between china and the USA . he is represented by klein sun gallery.

 

 

designboom: what made you want to become an artist?
zhang gong: I realized that I wanted to become an artist ever since I began to have some initial knowledge and understanding of art.

 

 

DB: who or what has been the biggest influence on your approach to art?
ZG: the biggest influence on my creative process has been the people from my maturation process, emerging step by step. therefore, there is no one specific person. in 1992, the shoeni gallery in hong kong held my premiere solo exhibition, which proved to be the most important event in terms of my creative work thus far.

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_The_Raft_of_Medusa_No.2_acrylic_on_canvas_130x197cm_2013
the raft of medusa no.2, 2013
acrylic on canvas, 130 x 197 cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_B-29_Bomber_acrylic_on_canvas_170x330cm_2008
B-29 bomber, 2008
acrylic on canvas, 170 x 330 cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_Cafe_No.2_Acrylic_on_canvas_120x220cm_2011
cafe no.2, 2011
acrylic on canvas, 120 x 220cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_Waiting_For_Spring_acrylic_on_canvas_120x175_2012 
waiting for spring, 2012
acrylic on canvas, 120 x 175 cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_Expulsion_from_Eden_Acrylic_on_canvas_110x170cm_2013
expulsion from eden, 2013
acrylic on canvas, 110 x 170 cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_Winter_in_Central_Park_acrylic_on_canvas_80x120cm_2011
winter in central park, 2011
acrylic on canvas, 80 x 120cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_Picnic_in_Hawaii_Acrylic_on_canvas_100x215cm_2013
picnic in hawaii, 2013
acrylic on canvas, 100 x 215cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_Gathering_in_La_Grande_Jatte_acrylic_on_canvas_80x120cm_2012
gathering in la grande jatte, 2012
acrylic on canvas, 80 x 120 cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_Golden_Beach_Acrylic_on_canvas_60x75cm_2011
golden beach, 2011
acrylic on canvas, 60 x 75cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

DB: how would you describe your approach to someone unfamiliar with your work?
ZG: my work, all along, has undergone continuous study, continuous reflection, and, continuous change – as a result my art is always subject to transformation.

 

 

DB: who would you describe the evolution of your work?
ZG: my first pieces of work came into fruition during the time when china was closed to all foreign contact and was thus influenced by the restrictive nature of the region and that work has the intense vestige of that period. my artwork today has developed during the thirty years since china opened its doors to the world – allowing for uninterrupted understanding regarding the contemporary art world, the absorption of that nourishment, and the opportunity to fuse all of this into the midst of my own artwork.

 

 

DB: which piece or collection has given you the most satisfaction?
ZG: the paintings that I created of new york and beijing, due to the fact that new york is my most beloved city in the world.

 

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_New_Museum_acrylic_on_canvas_2011
new york city, 2011
acrylic on canvas
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_New_York_City_Acrylic_on_canvas_120x220cm_2011
new york city, 2011
acrylic on canvas, 120 x 220cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_New_York_Morning_Acrylic_on_canvas_54x64cm_2011
new york morning, 2011
acrylic on canvas, 54x64cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

Zhang_Gong_New_York_Starry_Night_acrylic_on_canvas_120x220cm_2010
new york starry night, 2010
acrylic on canvas, 120 x 220 cm
image courtesy klein sun gallery, NY
© zhang gong

 

 

 

 

DB: do you have any superstitious beliefs or rules that you live by?
ZG: I have strong principles. life, I believe, has ecumenical value, freedom, justice, equality, and universal love. work, I believe, operates in line with the wheel of karma.

 

 

DB: what would you like to accomplish in the near future?
ZG: I would like to complete a batch of good work that can further prove myself as an artist.

 

 

DB: what’s your personal motto?
ZG: my personal motto is jean-paul sartre’s existentialist doctrine: choice and action.

 

 

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