The three pillars of China's artistic triumvirate are porcelain, calligraphy and painting. FitzGerald Fine Arts gallery in SoHo, and also at Aradar Gallery during Asia Week, is showcasing the works ranging from over-sized pots to wall panels from four of China's renowned ceramists. Reaching back thousands of years, entombed with emperors, lauded by scholars and hoarded by European nobility, porcelain has enjoyed a regal status as one of the most significant forms of Chinese art for over a millennium. Loved for their airy translucence, the porcelain from Jingdezhen in the Jiangxi province continues to fascinate connoisseurs and collectors around the world. In bringing these artists’ works together for the first time, FitzGerald Fine Arts is pleased to support and present the next chapter in a 1700-year artistic tradition.
Widely copied by European and Japanese craftsmen, the monochromatic, under-glaze and enameled wares of the ‘Porcelain Capitol’ have fed an artistic passion touching all four corners of the globe. Drawing from this opulent heritage, the four contemporary artists—Zhu Di, Gan Daofu, Zhang Goujun, Jared FitzGerald--represented at FitzGerald Fine Arts at 41 Greene Street in SoHo, continue to marry artistic with technological innovation. From their studios in Jingdezhen, each endeavors to raise the bar of artistic genius while respecting the context of an ancient past.
The kiln fires of Jingdezhen have produced most of China’s porcelain for over one thousand years. From its beginning, the city’s success owed much to an abundance of raw materials and proximity to key transportation routes. Situated in Northeast Jiangxi province, just off the waterways of the Yangtze River, the ceramic industry of the former Tang dynasty district of Fuliang has benefited from large forests, flowing streams, and uncommonly pure porcelain stone deposits. Synonymous with the hard, snow-white ceramic, Jingdezhen has unceasingly produced China’s finest quality ceramics for domestic, international and officially sanctioned consumption to this day.
More than any other art form in its long repertoire, porcelain has served to link China to a globalized network— procuring and inspiring creative influence from Africa to Indonesia. Its dual role as a technological marvel and a stage for individual expression has made it one the most fertile mediums for artistic innovation today. Enduring in the footsteps of antiquity, Jingdezhen porcelain has not only profoundly informed art within China, but has entwined itself within the greater narrative of world history. FitzGerald Fine Arts is proud to be a part of Jingdezhen’s contemporary narrative, securing a platform for these valued artists and their techniques.
With locations in New York, Beijing and Jingdezhen, FitzGerald Fine Arts is proud to be one of the world’s leading galleries in the presentation of contemporary Chinese porcelain and ink painting. Since its establishment in 2007, the gallery has endeavored to showcase the talents of master contemporary artists working in traditional mediums. Particular emphasis is placed on artists who highlight the incorporation of techniques dating back thousands of years with the arrival of a contemporary sensibility. www.fitzgeraldfinearts.com
Zhang Guojun was born in 1980 in Hefei, Anhui province. Trained in traditional techniques, he studied classical painting at the Chinese National Academy. Expressionistic washes of color add a spiritual dimension to formalized subjects such as river landscapes and scholar’s rocks. His large format paintings are created using diverse media such as resin, ink, varnish and overglaze enamels on elongated porcelain panels. Seen Below: Asking Mountain (2013); 66 x 95 inches; Jingdezhen porcelain panels.
Gan Daofu was born in Quanjiao, Anhui province, in 1960. He has emerged as a leading voice in the development of contemporary Chinese ceramics. Receiving his M.A. from the Jingdezhen Ceramics Institute, Daofu studied blue and white porcelain under its Director, Qin Xilin, and is a leading contemporary ceramicist associated with Ice Blue Art, as well as a pioneer in modern under glaze painting. Lavishing rich washes of pigment upon traditional baluster, ‘champion’, and square vase formats, Daofu exploits the splendor of Kangxi’s 17th century court to create a vivid modern dialogue. Seen Below: The Woods (After Fan Kuan), 2013; 34 x 9 inches; Jingdezhen porcelain.
Jared FitzGerald was born in Seattle, WA, and is the son of celebrated American artists James FitzGerald and Margret Tompkins. A student of Fine Arts and Classical Archaeology at the University of Washington, he went on to produce works in a variety of media, from classical ink painting to glazed ceramics, utilizing traditional Chinese materials such as porcelain and ink to communicate an animated narrative. His works are featured in solo and group exhibitions in the United States and China, including the National Art Museum of China, the Meridian Center in Washington D.C. and the Seattle Art Museum. Since 2007, he works in Beijing, New York and Jingdezhen. Seen Below: Writing 1 (2011), 25 x 20 inches; Jingdezhen porcelain.
Zhu Di was born in Anhui province, China, in 1969. After graduating from the Beijing Central Academy of Art and Design, he taught drawing and painting at the Hefei University of Technology and Chinese language at the University of Venice. Renowned throughout China as a master contemporary ceramicist, Di’s unique command of the high-fired glazing technique has earned him both domestic and international acclaim. In 2008 he published "The Soul of Venice; Reflections in the Water Captured by a Chinese Artist" with the Palazzo Vendramin Calergi, and divides his time between China and Italy. Seen Below: Evening Mist (2012), 82 x 72 ½ inches (with frame); Jingdezhen porcelain panels.
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