Zhou Chunya

China 1955

Sculpture, Neo-expressionism

Zhou Chunya
Zhou Chunya
March 26, 2017
Music, Gestalt, .

Born in 1955 in Chongqing, China, Zhou Chunya became a contemporary painter and sculptor. He is best known for his related works in two and three dimensions. A strong influence of traditional Chinese painting and German Neo-Expressionism is easily recognized in his artworks. The latter can be traced back to his graduate school days in Germany, where he obtained his Master’s degree from the Kassel Academy of Fine Art in 1988. Zhou returned to China in 1989. His education is not the only German thing to inspire Zhou. It is his dog, a German Shepherd named Heigen, that takes the most credit for these exquisite pieces of Chinese art.

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Zhou Chunya – Green Dog And The Red Body, 2007

The Meaning of Color in Zhou’s Art

The artist is renowned for his Green Dogs series of artworks. His beloved dog Heigen was the main motif of his art for more than a decade. The bright colors of his choice are no accident since Zhou has a precise shade of green called Italian Classico Verde 290. For the artist, this green dog serves as a symbolic self-portrait. And the color gets its meaning only when people think of it, it is at that moment that it becomes a symbol, says Zhou. And when confronted with Zhou’s paintings, the spectator is bound to look at a mysterious web of symbols. His art depicts the distance between people, with a background of uncertainty and loneliness. Green Dogs series is a mere projection of the artist’s life circumstances.

His art depicts the distance between people and feelings of loneliness

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ZhouChunya – Three Boxers, 2007

Appreciating Life

After his dog had died, Zhou’s style of art changed, as he suddenly sees the beauty of life around him. His motif now becomes peach blossoms, as he watched them blossom, and was moved by their vigor. He started combining the traditional Chinese motif with a rather modern approach to sexuality, as his paintings receive pink men and women in an embrace. The figures are sinuously shaped, giving a different meaning to the traditional denotation of the peach blossom tree, which now receives a lascivious meaning. The fragile flowers remind the spectators of the ephemeral nature of life, maybe warning them to embrace the beauty just like lovers embrace one another.

The figures are sinuously shaped under a peach blossom

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Zhou Chunya – Untitled Artwork (Left) / Peach Blossom Tree, 2006 (Right)

Beyond Art

Not only is Zhou a prolific artist, counting a number of artistic accomplishments, he also serves as a council member of the Chinese Oil Painting Society and holds several VP positions of different Associations and Committees. His work has been exhibited around the world, in a number of international galleries and museums – National Art Museum in Beijing, Shanghai Gallery of Art and Museum of Fine Arts in Huston, to name a few.

Zhou Chunya lives and works in Chengdu, China.

Featured image: Zhou Chunya – portrait – photo via chengdumoca.com

YearExhibition TitleGallery/MuseumSolo/Group
2010Flora and Fauna', Solo show at ARCO Madrid, SpainGroup
2007Red Hot! Asian Art from the Chaney Family Collection, Houston Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, USAGroup
2007Zhou Chunya, ChinaToday Gallery, Brussels, BelgiumSolo
2006Zhou Chunya, Zeng FanZhi and Ji DaChun Longrun Art, Beijing ChinaGroup
2006Ten Years Chinese Contemporary Gallery, Beijing, ChinaGroup
2006Blue House Artists Chinese Contemporary, Beijing, ChinaGroup
2006Zhou Chunya: Three on the Bund Shanghai Gallery, Shanghai, ChinaSolo
2005Living in Chengdu Exhibition of Chinese Contemporary Oil Painting 18 Chinese Contemporary Artists, Soobin Art Gallery, SingaporeGroup
2005Focus on China WBK Vrije Academie Den Haan HollandGroup
2005Biennale International D'Art Contemporain Chinois de Montpellier FranceGroup
2005Land of Warmth - the opening exhibition Red Bridge Gallery, Shanghai, ChinaGroup
2004Dreaming of Dragon's Nation-Contemporary Art Exhibition from China Irish Museum of Modern Art, IrelandGroup
2004Living in Chengdu-Inviting Exhibition of Chinese Contemporary Oil Paing ShenZhen Art Museum ChinaGroup
2004New Works by Liu Wei Zheng ZaiDong Zhou ChunYa Shanghai Gallery of Art at Three on the BundGroup
2004Beyond Boundaries Shanghai Gallery of Art at Three on the Bund, ShanghaiGroup
2003Alors La China Centre Pompidou, Paris FranceGroup
2003Six Marks of the Paintbrush Gallery Miejska Arsenal, PoznaGroup
2003Made in China Fondation D'Art Contemporian Florence-Daniel Guerlain, Paris, FranceGroup
2003BWA-Salon Sztuki Wspolczesnej Bydgoszcz, Miejska Sztuki, Lodz Gallery, Bielska BWA, Bielsko-Biala, PolandGroup
2002The First GuangZhouTriennial Guangdong Museum of Art Guangzhou, ChinaGroup
2002Dream 02 Contemporary Chinese art The Red Mansion Foundation, LondonGroup
2002Zhou Chun Ya Museum of Art Modern Contemporary, Trento ItalyGroup
2002Green Dogs 314 International Art Centre Bergen, NorwaySolo
2001Towards a New Image National Art Museum, Beijing, Shanghai Art Museum, Sichuan Art Museum, Guangdong Art Museum, ChinaGroup
2001The First Chengdu Biennial Chengdu Museum of Modern Art, Chengdu, ChinaGroup
2001Five Chinese Avant-garde artists Seoul, KoreaGroup
2000Chinese Oil Painting in the 20th Century National Art Museum, BeijingGroup
1999Liberation Chinese Contemporary London, EnglandGroup
1999China Limn Gallery San Francisco, CAGroup
1998Green Dog & Masters Chinese Contemporary London, EnglandGroup
1998East Meets East in the West Limn Gallery, San Francisco, USAGroup
19978 Avant- Garde Chinese Artists Soobin Art Gallery, SingaporeGroup
1997The Works of Zhou Chunya Taipei Nothern Banker Art & Culture Art Gallery Taipei, ChinaGroup
1997Beizhuang Gallery, Taibei, Taiwan,Solo
1996The First Shanghai Biennale Art Museum Shanghai, ShanghaiGroup
1996China! (Chinese Contemporary Art)Group
1994The Annual Exhibition of Works of the Artists Nominated by Art Critics National Art Museum, BeijingGroup
1994The Works of Zhou Chunya Taipei, ChinaGroup
1994Xiaoya Gallery, Taibei, Taiwan,Solo
1993China's New Art, Post-1989, Art Central, Hong KongGroup
1992The First 90 Guangzhou Biennale, Exhibiting Central, GuangzhouGroup
1987The Works of Zhou Chunya, Düsseldorf, GermanyGroup
1987Zhou Chunya Invitational Exhibition, Linz, AustriaGroup
1981Seconds Chinese youth Exhibition, National Art Museum, Beijing