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BUTTERFLY

Lot No. 1263
Artist: Walasse Ting (1920 - 2010)

Series: China Guardian HK 2016 Autumn Auctions
Session: 20th Century and Contemporary Chinese Art
Size: 49 x 61.5 cm
Dynasty: People's Republic of China (1949-)
Estimate: HKD 120,000-180,000
Price Realized: Unsold

Painted in 1961;Oil on canvas;Signed ting and dated on reverse;Note:This work is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity issued by Gummeson gallery, Sweden;Walasse Ting(1920 - 2010)Walasse Ting was born in Wuxi and lived in Hong Kong in his early years. In 1961, when it was the heyday for Abstract Expressionism while Pop Art was emerging, Ting moved from Paris to New York to further his study in painting. He became friend with many important artists including Sam Francis and Andy Warhol. As influenced by the environment, Ting began his abstract expressionist creations by splashing abundant colours on canvas. The painting, Butterfly, marked the beginning of his new approach on applying oil colours with abstract expressionist techniques. He superimposed layers of warm oil colour to outline the enchanting shape of the butterfly wings. Without using traditional figurative techniques, Ting created a strong visual impact by using strong colours. This painting represents a successful attempt of Ting. He began to use violent brushwork and brilliant colours as initiated by COBRA, a European avant-garde movement, which later became his pictorial formulae for the rest of his life as represented in this iconic work.Wu Song Slaying The Tiger is a Chinese ink painting based on a traditional theme collaborated by Ting and his close friend Chao Chung-Hsiang (Zhao Chunxiang). This painting is not only seen as a breakthrough in their style but also as a token of their friendship. Although this classic theme for Chinese art has been portrayed by many other artists, this ink painting by Ting and Chao is still considered uncommon. In the painting, Wu Song looks stern with half baring teeth representing his bravery. The heavy-colouring in black not only suggests that his clothes were tainted by hard work, but also represents the struggling and chaos when ‘fighting the tiger’. The tiger, on the other hand, looks panic with its body paralised defenselessly like a pool of mud. The large area of blank space on the painting without respecting the traditional concept on painting size allows the audience to feel the vigor and energy. This painting, based on a traditional Chinese theme added with abstract expressionist elements, is seen as a tribute and a new attempt by Ting and Chao.

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