• Zhong Cheng 2017 Spring Auction「Morden And Contemporary Art」
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    CHU TEHCHUN (1920-2014 )

    Le 15.5.1976


    Oil on Canvas

    Signed Chu Teh-Chun in Chinese and English Signed on the reverse: Titled and signed Chu Teh-Chun in English

    Estimate TWD 17,000,000-20,000,000
    USD 560,100-659,000
    HKD 0-0

    Hammer Price TWD 22,800,000
    USD 765,101
    HKD 6,145,553

With a certificate of authenticity from Chu Teh-Chun\\\'s workshop

Provenance:PROVENANCE: Private Collection, France




Painting feels like a grand tour! My senses explode when I face the canvas, and I charter into the unknown with my paintbrush!
- Chu Teh-Chun

An iconic artist who transcended form and figure

“A Twentieth Century Song Dynasty Painter”, this is how French art critic Jean-François Chabrun described Chu Teh-Chun. There’s a profound meaning and a statement of fact behind this: Chu’s abstract art is the manifestation of both modern ideology and the classic spirit of traditional Chinese culture. The two merged organically in his hands. His art embodies the delicate and sensitive nature of the East as well as the bold and colorful lexicons of the West. The combination is unique, a new Eastern abstract that is unparalleled.   

His profound understanding of philosophy and literature translate into poetic grandeur and solemnity under his paintbrush. His paintings are the ultimate embodiment of poetry, flowing like a lyrical poem depicting vivid imagery. He was exceptional in both Eastern and Western art, which is why he was inducted into the Académie des Beaux-Arts in 1997. He was the first Chinese inductee in the Academy’s history. Later on, he was acclaimed as “most successfully melding the intricacy in Eastern art with the deep saturation of Western paintings”. 

Dazzling and lavish splendors

Chu painted Le 15.5.1976 in 1976. With light and colors, he created an image that is profound, majestic and unbound. The use of burnt orange is deliberate. It saturates, defining the stark contrast between light and darkness, and adding layers and a sense of space, as though the burning flame penetrates darkness, radiating warmth, like a statement of its scorching vitality. His brushstrokes race wildly back and forth, splashing colors like the lightening blazing through the lower half of the painting. The ineffable energy continues, like lava erupting with momentum into the dash of teal, into the origin of the universe, into the splendors through time and space. French critic Pierre Cabanne once thus described Chu’s works, “There is a burning passion in Chu Teh-Chu’s world that releases natural energy unbound by any theories, doctrines and scopes.” One step at a time, Chu charged toward spiritual expressions by overcoming challenges in form and style, toward abstraction, and a broader and higher ground. 

In Le 15.5.1976, Chu applied a style in Chinese calligraphy called hallow strokes. The sporadic brushstrokes run rapidly through the canvas, twisting over each other, forming a melody in which chaos and order coexist. The themes unfold with unstoppable force, echoing, swirling, and repeating themselves. Chu’s consideration of the duality between the black and white, dominate and subordinate, solid and void is deliberate, giving the fragmented points and lines as well as the narrow blank space a witty and permeating presence in a vast world of rhythms. Chu broke free from Rembrandt’s gloom and heaviness. Elements beyond culture, and beyond time and space are woven into a poetic and spiritual realm where yin and yang synergize, where the supple and rigid supplement, and where harmony prevail over antagonism.  

French art critic Pierre Cabanne stated in Chu Teh-Chun, “Neither line nor color can embody a landscape; they merely reveal its intrinsic strength. The painter frees them from the abounding imagination of the cosmos and, in so doing, marries the body with the mind. Territories of tranquility and clamor appear in painting after painting, all of which Chu Teh-Chun gave the name Composition. The series, whose name encompasses imagination, implication, lyricism, and congeniality, gave rise to another world of expression and passion — this is the world of painting, where painting is thinking.” Chu’s abstract is charismatic and vibrant, unfolding a world of infinity that wonders into the void, and the boundless mind and soul where the aesthetic paradigm representing an era was born. 

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