The New Ink Generation: Young Artists on What the Classical Ink Painting Tradition Means to Them


Asia Society Hong Kong Center and Art Central Education Program Series

Afternoon Discussion with Artists Hung Fai, Hong Wai, Peng Wei, Ni Youyu, and Tiffany Beres (Moderator)
Discussion 3pm - 4pm


The Chinese tradition of “ink art” stretches far beyond brush-and-ink painting, to embrace a set of aesthetic principles centered on renewal and reinterpretation of the past. Today, while numerous contemporary artists allude to traditional Chinese pictorial and calligraphic concepts in their visual vocabulary, there are far fewer artists whose work suggests a conscientious effort to engage with and transform this ancient Chinese art form as a defining feature of their artistic vision. This forum will invite four emerging young artists whose artistic voice meaningfully reference the age-old “ink aesthetic” with the use of new artistic media and techniques. Representing different major modern ink art centers in Asia, and having all exhibited and/or worked abroad, these young globally conscious contemporary artists share background in traditional ink painting yet explore radically different methodologies in their new "ink" artwork to access a global audience. During the forum, these neo-traditionalist artists will discuss their artistic practice, and how they have been able to transform, extend and reconstruct the ink tradition in a postmodern context.

Hung Fai born in Hong Kong (1988), graduated from the Fine Arts department of The Chinese University of Hong Kong in 2013 and is currently working as a full-time artist in Hong Kong. Hung Fai’s creation focuses mainly on the field of contemporary Chinese ink art. Hung has developed unique expression and presentation techniques on both paper and canvas. Through deconstruction of elements in traditional Chinese ink paintings, his works are reconstructed conceptually with series of experimentation and transformation, and extended possibilities in ink painting. Hung Fai has exhibited in Hong Kong and held a solo exhibition “Movement - Hung Fai” in 2014. He has received awards including the Certificates of Merit - Hong Kong Art Prize 2013, Wucius Wong Creative Ink Painting Award (2013), among others. His works have been collected by M+ Museum for Visual Culture, Hong Kong and private collectors.

Hong Wai born in mainland China (1982) and raised in Macao is an ink transmedia artist based in Paris and Macao. She journeys with ink to a new frontier, that of the mysterious feminine, though the technique has been confined to a masculine universe for centuries. Her works have been exhibited worldwide, from Macao, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Taiwan, Singapore, Melbourne, Montreal, London, Paris, and featured in various exhibitions, art fairs and international publications. Her doctoral studies are on the deceased ink painter Wu Guangzhong. Hong’s latest joint exhibition was Like Thunder Out of China in Montreal/Toronto together with artists Gao Brothers, Hung Tunglu, Cang Xin , Zhang Huan, Chang Lei, Lu Feifei and Dai Guangyu.

Peng Wei born in Chengdu, China (1974) and lives and works in Beijing. She graduated from Nankai University with a BA in Fine Art in 1997, and earned a MPhil in Aesthetics in 2000. From 2000 to 2006 she was editor for ART Magazine. Peng Wei is a conservator of Chinese aesthetics, updating and revitalizing elements of classical Chinese painting and bringing her fresh perspective to ancient Chinese art forms. Paying particular attention to materials and iconography, Peng Wei is perhaps best known for her delicate ink color paintings on silk and paper which combine imagery of traditional literati painting with more modern forms and expressions from everyday life. Peng Wei’s works have been exhibited extensively around Asia and have been collected by the Boston Museum, the Brooklyn Museum, the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, the National Art Museum of China, the Hong Kong Museum of Art, the M+ Museum, the Uli Sigg Collection, among others.

Ni Youyu (b. 1984) graduated from the department of Chinese Painting, College of Fine Arts, Shanghai University in 2007. He currently lives and works in Shanghai. Although trained in traditional Chinese landscape painting, today Ni Youyu’s art diverges from traditional media by embracing contemporary and more experimental practices or re-inventing traditional Chinese media. As a process of deconstructing art history, Ni Youyu often creates thought provoking multimedia works through processes of erasure and erosion. In 2014 Ni Youyu was awarded “Best Young Artist” at the Contemporary Chinese Art Awards (CCAA) and in 2012 he was also the youngest artist to be given a solo exhibition at the Shanghai Art Museum. His works have been exhibited extensively around the world and have been collected by several museums around the world.

Tiffany Wai-Ying Beres is an independent art curator, whose research focuses on modern and contemporary Chinese ink art. Born in San Francisco, California to a bi-racial family, Tiffany grew up practicing ink painting and calligraphy, stimulating her interest in Chinese art and art history. After graduating from Brown University and apprenticing in the Asian antiquities field, she moved to China on a Fulbright fellowship to explore ink art in its native milieu and to meet the artists revolutionizing the field. From 2007 to 2010, Tiffany served as international affairs officer and a Chinese ink painting specialist for China Guardian, China’s largest auction house, before returning to work directly with artists. Tiffany has conducted exhibitions in the USA, France, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Mainland China and is a frequent lecturer on the topic of Chinese art. In addition to working with celebrated ink art masters, Tiffany has a particular passion for discovering and exposing young ink artists.  

Event Details

Sun 15 Mar 2015
3 - 4 p.m.
Central Harbourfront Event Space, 9 Lung Wo Road
Free admission; Registration not required
Add to Calendar 20150315T070000 20150315T080000 UTC Asia Society: The New Ink Generation: Young Artists on What the Classical Ink Painting Tradition Means to Them Central Harbourfront Event Space, 9 Lung Wo Road