He Ping

He Ping, an artist born in Shanghai, has learned to draw exquisite and changeable paintings from traditional calligraphy art and modern expressionism. The architecture of traditional Chinese calligraphy lays the basis for He Ping’s pattern creation, whose figures are presented in a minimalist manner. By applying numerous performance techniques, He Ping sometimes sketches abstract skeletons with light, fast lines, whilst sometimes paints complicated compositions with thick ink and heavy colors. With neat, simple backgrounds, He ping highlights the gradually changing colors and the dynamics of the arc.

Every stroke seems clear and full, generating a visual impact maximally. In addition to colors, texture also plays an important role in his works, with thin blocks as light as the yarn, and the heavily layered-up paint looking like a hill protruding from the canvas. The application of geometrical figures by traditional Chinese calligraphy, as sublimed and interpreted by the painter, leads to satisfactory results equal to Kandinsky’s cubism. He Ping’s creation is not only distinguished from Western painting arts, but is also considered an independent school in Modern Chinese fine arts, with a creativity and comprehensiveness that allowed him to reserve and blend the essence of Chinese and Western arts in his paintings. 

Painted parts of a whole

Chinese artist He Ping talks to Lorella Fava about his latest exhibition, Persistence of Form


The idea of deconstruction, introduced by French philosopher Jacques Derrida referring to the breaking apart of elements traditionally combined together, is not something new for the contemporary world. We now appear to live in a culture obsessed with the breaking down of structure, going so far as having restaurants serving ‘deconstructed banoffee’ and ‘deconstructed burgers’.

This idea of entangling a united whole, be it an object or a more vague ideology, and focusing on its basic materials is something which has also influenced the art world. Looking at He Ping’s art pieces in his exhibition Persistence of Form, one can see a deconstruction of structure as his works are filled with shadows, dynamic movements and primordial forms, rather than a solid pictorial representation of an object. 

"As is apparent, the images I paint do not capture definite physicality, but are rather themselves in a dynamic state of transformation dictated by the rhythm of their conceptualisation. This makes my painting a totally natural occurrence and visible consequence of the creative process."

Despite the abstract façade of the works, ping’s abstraction is, in effect, deeply rooted in nature, life and humanity as Ping still attempts to portray the human figure, rather than notions that are more nonconcrete in their representation. Ping explains, however, that while painting the human subject, it is part of “the vast cosmic space within which I explore both family and unfamiliar state of existence.”

Speaking further on this idea of the familiar and unfamiliar, Ping necessitates that even though one can deem the human figure as realistic, what the public might recognize as “realistic” and “abstract” are their own personal inferences of what he paints. In this manner, Ping attempts to deconstruct not the structure of an object he attempts to portray per se, but the preconceived notions of realistic/familiar and abstract/unfamiliar. Innovation, in this sense, is a “departure from common belief”.

Despite his focus on questioning the traditional ways of looking at art, what is interesting to note in Ping’s work is that his hold on tradition is still apparent is his use of calligraphic techniques to produce works that are more instinctive in nature.

“I wield my brush freely to express a perception or concept. Nonetheless, in the process of painting, habitual practices and techniques of Chinese character writing are indeed manifested.”

Thus, through Ping’s colorful work, the viewer is able to enjoy quintessential elements of Chinese culture with a contemporary and modern searching expressionistic approach.

“It is through searching in the depths of things that I discovered the infinite possibilities of painting. There possibilities may not be apparent, but they are indeed an existing component of the colorful and structural constituents of life and the universe.” 

------TIME OF MALTA Monday, September 5, 2016

Exhibition and Art Activities

        2017 Apr-May ---- VIVA Valletta International Visual Art Festival, solo exhibition in The MILL B’KARA..

2016 Sep.----- solo exhibition in ST JAMES CAVALIER, Valletta, Malta

2015 May ---- solo exhibition in Madrid, Spain at China Culture Center.

              2015 Feb -----  solo exhibition in Malta at China Culture Center.

2014 Dec ------ exhibition in Berlin, German.

2013 Jun. –  Solo exhibition “City & He” opened in 188 Art Salon

 2007 Nov. - Attending The 11th Shanghai Art Fair 2007.

2006 Nov. - Solo exhibition in Shanghai Big Warehouse Gallery in M50.

1999 Sep. 1-29 -  Be invited by “Stephen Gang Gallery” in New York to attend the group exhibition with the title “Cross cultural voice – Between Memories”, 

1997 Aug. -  Eight paintings exhibited in 97 Shanghai Art Fair. 

1997 Jan. 1-7 - Big Solo Exhibition (over sixty paintings) opened in New Shanghai Library opening ceremony.

E-mail: phelley_he@163.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ping.he.180072

Web site: http://artistpinghe.tumblr.com

Issuu: https://issuu.com/studiobyblos/docs/ping_he_issuu