What inspired your winning entry? A child’s ability to render the world into a bright dream is a precious gift. As we grow, those moments when time pauses and all boundaries seem lifted are easily forgotten. Then, at times, these moments find their way back to us, and they open our eyes again to what could be. Harper’s moment of contemplation and peace deeply captivated me.
How would you describe your style? My paintings don’t fall in any particular genre or style. I follow my heart instead of any rules. I’m always trying to paint what I couldn’t paint before.
What artists, living or deceased, have influenced your work? As a child I learned how to paint by studying the works of the old masters. I appreciated their traditions, and I had an equally strong desire to break away from them. I love art that truly expands me. Many contemporary artists inspire me to create from a deeper place, including Gerhard Richter, Chen Danqing, James Turrell, and Ang Lee, to name a few.
What is the best advice you have ever received? Remember not to drink from and clean brushes in the same jar.
If you weren’t an artist, what would you be? The joy for me is in turning visions into reality. If I weren’t an artist, I would still use my learning to advocate for innovative thinking and progression for the betterment of our society.
What’s the most meaningful recognition you’ve received for your artwork? The most meaningful recognition to me would be inspiring new generations of artists to challenge the status quo and to think differently. And this is the underlying concept in my 2016 solo exhibition at a museum in Shanghai, China.
Featured in the December 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
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