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b. 1935, China

Hsiao Chin Biography

Born in Shanghai in 1935, Hsiao Chin left for Taiwan in 1949 and in 1952, studied under Li Chun-Sen, an important figure in the development of contemporary Chinese painting. A radical of the period, Hsiao was part of the Ton Fan Art Group, commonly hailed “the Eight Bandits” or the “Eight Great Outlaws” due to their opposition to the government, that resisted all forms of the avant-garde., The collective of artists were inspired by contemporary Western art, which was extraordinary in context, as preceding generations, drew almost exclusively from 19th century European painting. The Ton Fan Art Group was influenced by the history of post-war Western abstraction. Greatly inspired by nature whilst striving for spontaneity in artistic gestures balancing fullness and emptiness, these artists would quickly assimilate and above all interpret it to freely express their own identity.

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From an extract of the Ton Fan Group manifesto entitled "Our Declaration" the Ton Fan Group wrote: "Our country’s conception of traditional painting is fundamentally similar to that of the modern world, even if there are slight differences in forms of expression. If we could generalise the development of modern painting in our country, then the infinite artistic treasures of China would have a new place in today’s world trends and walk down a large, forever changing road…” With this declaration, the artists of the Ton Fan Group demonstrated that the notions of traditional Chinese art and those of modern art should not be set against each other. Their new conceptions drew on the history of traditional Chinese art to as
a source for innovation.

By the mid-1950’s, Hsiao had developed his very first works of abstraction and was awarded the Spanish Government Scholarship to study in Spain in 1956. Showing his work in three consecutive editions of the Spanish International Jazz Salon, Hsiao established himself amongst the highest calibre of his contempraries.

In the late 1950s, Hsiao created Pintura-AO and Pintura Q, representing a transition from geometric abstraction and marking his particular reinterpretation of the early 20th century art movement. The aforementioned paintings are exemplars of this period, with a limited primary colour palette generously applied in broad expanses to the canvas. Concurrently, Hsiao’s reconditioning of motifs and calligraphic forms from his home culture is evident and translated as closed forms, composed on a flat pictorial space. In 1959, Hsiao immigrated to Milan and matured as an avant-garde artist under the mentorship of Mazzotta and G.Marconi.

By the mid-1960’s Hsiao Chin became increasingly interested in representing the infinite. He captured the cosmos in his minimalistic works, limited in their range of colours and utilising regular forms. This is represented by Movement of Life, where the composition is dissected into two planes, with a saccharine pink space hovering above the white. Visually mediating the two forms are speckled indigo contours and circular forms, rendering the sublime with nominal devices. Drawing on spiritual symbols shared by Eastern and Western civilisations, his works visualise ideologies and seek to refine representations of beauty with pure simplicity.

Starting in 1960’s, Hsiao founded several important modern art movements in Europe, including the Movimento Punto (1961), the Surya Movement (1977), and the Shaki movement (1989). Art continues to be a journey of inner quest for him. Upon losing his only daughter to an accident in 1990, Hsiao had an epiphany, reconciling, accepting and perceiving the Taoist philosophies of “rebirth.” In his words, “life leaves us in one form, but returns in another, because life is a cycle that never dies.” Flying Beyond the Flower Garden, Energy of Life, and Concerto are Hsiao’s odes to life as he conquers the ultimate fear of death, with the gentle imprints of these pieces continuing to characterise his works which were produced after this period.

Exhibition view: Hsiao Chin, Harmony of the Grande Chi, Liang Gallery, Taipei (23 January–18 April 2021). Courtesy Liang Gallery. 

Hsiao Chin Featured Artworks

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Infinite Aspects by Hsiao Chin contemporary artwork
Hsiao ChinInfinite Aspects, 2020Porcelain
Liang Gallery Contact Gallery
Enjoy Yourself by Hsiao Chin contemporary artwork
Hsiao ChinEnjoy Yourself, 2020Porcelain
Liang Gallery Contact Gallery
Passage to the Great Threshold-159 by Hsiao Chin contemporary artwork
Hsiao ChinPassage to the Great Threshold-159, 1992Chinese ink & acrylic on paper
47 x 69 cm
Alisan Fine Arts Contact Gallery
Due Universi by Hsiao Chin contemporary artwork
Hsiao ChinDue Universi, 2004Acrylic on canvas
55 1/8 x 43 1/4 inches
Eli Klein Gallery Contact Gallery
La Cascata-30 by Hsiao Chin contemporary artwork
Hsiao ChinLa Cascata-30, 1990Acrylic on canvas
46 x 32 cm
Alisan Fine Arts Contact Gallery
La nascita del nuovo mondo by Hsiao Chin contemporary artwork
Hsiao ChinLa nascita del nuovo mondo, 1997Acrylic on canvas
130 x 200 cm
Lin & Lin Gallery Contact Gallery
Chi-280 炁-氣之280 by Hsiao Chin contemporary artwork
Hsiao ChinChi-280 炁-氣之280, 1988Acrylic on paper
50 x 67.5 cm
Eslite Gallery Contact Gallery
Chi-313 炁-氣313 by Hsiao Chin contemporary artwork
Hsiao ChinChi-313 炁-氣313, 1981Acrylic on paper
127 x 64 cm
Eslite Gallery Contact Gallery

Hsiao Chin Current & Recent Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, Hsiao Chin, Harmony of the Grande Chi at Liang Gallery, Taipei
Closing Soon
23 January–18 April 2021 Hsiao Chin Harmony of the Grande Chi Liang GalleryTaipei
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Gallery Artists Autumn Show at Lin & Lin Gallery, Taipei
17 October–21 November 2020 Group Exhibition Gallery Artists Autumn Show Lin & Lin GalleryTaipei
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Painting from Taiwan at Eli Klein Gallery, New York
1 August–6 October 2019 Group Exhibition Painting from Taiwan Eli Klein GalleryNew York

Hsiao Chin Represented By

Hsiao Chin In Related Press

HSIAO CHIN. A COLLECTION. Related Press HSIAO CHIN. A COLLECTION. 22 September 2017, ArtAsiaPacific

The Fondazione Marconi in Milan dedicated a museum-sized retrospective to Chinese artist Hsiao Chin, including more than 200 works from the gallery's collection. Showcasing paintings on canvas and paper dating from the late 1950s to the present, the exhibition traced the development of Hsiao's colorful abstraction infused with principles of Taoist...

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