Artist of Note | Xu Gang

Light that stirs the heart

Xu Gang, Eastern Sierra Lake, oil, 22 x 28.

Xu Gang, Eastern Sierra Lake, oil, 22 x 28.

 

 

 

This story was featured in the November 2017 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art November 2017 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.

China native Xu Gang took to drawing at an early age and began his formal training in oil painting when he entered the university in the 1990s. “I became a college teacher after graduation and have been teaching oil painting for nearly three decades,” he says. All the while, Gang has been rendering his own interpretations of the diverse landscapes he has inhabited over that time, from China to Russia to Europe to Southern California, where he now makes his home.

Fascinated by the work of the 19th-century French Impressionists, Gang’s canvases feature short, discreet brush strokes of thick-and-thin unblended color that vibrate with movement—canvases devoted to capturing “the beauty and wonder of changing light,” he says, whether he is painting the movement of the sunlight on the water along California’s rocky coast or the radiant colors of a bouquet of spring flowers. “Flowers, to me, are life in full bloom,” he says. “It’s poetry; it’s art; it’s beauty to the eye and to the mind.”

A keen observer of nature, the artist dedicates ample time to studying and understanding the changing colors as the light falls on his subject matter. Then, to capture its essence, he employs contrasting cool and warm colors, different hues of the same color, color complements, and lights and darks. “I’d like to use my brush to convey the grandeur and beauty of nature,” he says, “to capture the transient moment when light and color meet the eye and stir the heart and create an indelible impression on the mind.”—Laura Rintala

Gang’s work can be found at Tirage Fine Art Gallery, Pasadena, CA.

This story was featured in the November 2017 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art November 2017 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.

MORE RESOURCES FOR ART COLLECTORS & ENTHUSIASTS
Subscribe to Southwest Art magazine
Learn how to paint & how to draw with downloads, books, videos & more from North Light Shop
Sign up for your Southwest Art email newsletter & download a FREE ebook

COMMENT