Zhang He was born in Shen Yang, China in 1963. He specialized in oil painting at the LuXun Institute of Art after completing studies in Photography and Stage Design. Zhang He moved to Montreal, Canada in 1998 where he currently lives and works.
In his refusal to settle on easy formulae, the artist has induced a process of constant reinvention that has given his art extraordinary power and momentum over the past decade. He's bright paintings have developed from depictions of abstracted plants, flowers and figures to full on visual abstraction. His vigorous abstractions range from austere studies in movement and energy to exuberant explosions of color that express the ever-changing landscape of his emotions. Gestural power and luminous hues reflect the verve and freedom of Chinese calligraphy, while each painting is a journey of self-discovery, continual exploration, and personal transformation.
The artist’s energy and ruptured use of colour place him close to European expressionism. He embraces this association, while maintaining a close relationship to the traditions of Chinese oil painting. The concept of Chi is integral to He's work. In traditional Chinese culture, Chi is believed to be part of everything that exists, as in "life force" or "spiritual energy". Chi serves as a metaphor for the fundamental physical properties of the universe.
There is an affinity to Jean-Paul Riopelle, Emile Borduas and the Automatistes of Quebec who were influenced by surrealism and automatism. Their painting and writing were concerned with spontaneous production without preconception. While Riopelle's painting implies a more calculated landscaping of the canvas, Zhang He's strongly illustrates spontaneity of the sub-conscious that was closely affiliated with the Automatiste objective. This spontaneity, along with He's lyrical brushstrokes, skillful mixing of colour and sculptural impasto, result in a delicious palette. With paint like hot lava, the artwork of Zhang He surges onto the canvas. His bold strokes of colour and luminous hues are gorgeous and seductive, evoking energy and passion, sensuality and angst, adding emotion to his contemporary style.
Notable Public and Private Collections
|IACO Intl Aviation Corp, Montreal, QC|
|Pfiffner Mgmt, Montreal, QC & Zurich|
|Lise Watier Intl, Montreal, QC, Paris|
|Monit International, Montreal, QC|
|Hot & Spicy Inc, Canada & China|
|L’EQUIPE Uomo Montreal, QC|
|Ta Yu association|
|Bertrand Deslauriers, Bureau des Avocats|
|Association du Nouveau Monde, Hong Kong|
|Studio Verstile ltee Inc. Montreal, QC|
|Graphic Design Studio Paul Tom Inc. Montreal, QC|
|Howard Szalavetz Properties Montreal, QC|
|Purchase & Rental- Musée des Beaux Arts de Montréal, QC|
|Cormark Securities Inc, Toronto|
|Elements, Toronto, ON|
Selected Solo Exhibitions
Select Group Exhibitions