Dapu (Zhang Ai Min) Page 1:
Leona Craig Art Gallery
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Legend of the Tibetan Mastiff, original oil painting by Zhang Ai Min (Dapu),
In some of Zhang Ai Min's recent work, he uses a composite, collage scheme, and we think that this is one of the best of those. In the center, there is a face of the mastiff; above him, a goddess. Then, under his face is another mastiff, lying down, represented with very few lines. At the bottom corner is a mastiff puppy along with three primitive women figures.
Twilight Road: original oil painting on canvas by Dapu (Zhang Ai Min) 2009
When I met Dapu a few years ago, I was very pleased. I could tell he had talent, and he also listened to my critique of his work, which is a good thing for any professional to do. He was happy to meet me, too, because he though that I really understood his work, and, prior to meeting me, most of his works went directly to big collectors, leaving him little chance for exposure.
I have seen good development and experiment with differing styles from him, and this painting shows me that he has really grown, as an artist: it is pure expressionism with its larger bold dashes of the brush and its beautiful mix of colors. In fact, other dealer, when they see this painting, think that it from a much more mature artist.
It is a wonderful step in Dapu's artistic development, and we are pleased to be able to present this work to you.
Modern Tibetan Man: oil painting portrait by Dapu (Ai Min Zhang)
He wears his hair long but neat. He has traditional beaded and braided headband on underneath a more fanciful modern cowboy hat. He is a modern man from the Tibetan Plateau, in the region around the border between China and Tibet. He looks rather dapper with his hat tilted on his head, and he exudes self-confidence.
It is a very nice portrait painting by Dapu, and it is a good representation of the so-called Zang minority people who live in the region. Indeed, it has the look of a portrait of an American Indian, and it reminds us that those first Americans came from this part of the world. It also reminds us of a portrait of a Zang man by Jian Bai Xu that we also have available, in the Leona Craig Catalogue Art Gallery. The brushwork is wonderful, the colors are bright and beautiful, and Dapu has not let us down with this display of his talent in portraits.
Dapu is a talented, relatively undiscovered artist who we recently discovered and who displays talents in a number of venues and styles. He is honing his talents by exploring life on the border between China and Tibet, and he has brought us some wonderful, expressive chronicles of life, from there, in his paintings, which show thoughtfulness, in their topics, and ability, in their presentation.
Forest #2: original oil painting on canvas by Dapu (Zhang Ai Min) 2009
This painting is actually the painted expression of a song from the Hakka minority people of China. Dapu told us that he painted this abstract expressionistic scene of a forest while singing the song, and the paintings has actually captured the excitement and emotion that he was feeling, while singing.
One of the things that we appreciate most about Dapu, aside from the fact that he has settled on the Tibetan Plateau to paint the scenes and the lives of people, there, is that he is constantly evolving and experimenting in his art. We just love this one.
Herding Sheep: original oil painting on canvas by Dapu (Zhang Ai Min) 2009
We liked the more dark, brooding colors: purples, blue-greens, and tans, of this painting of a herder returning home with his flock for the evening. It is more reminiscent of the "Tonalist School", paintings from which we have had, in the past.
Dapu always makes beautiful pictures from simple scenes of daily life on the Tibetan plateau, and his breadth of styles and techniques makes us appreciate him even more.
Ta'er Temple: original oil painting on canvas by Dapu (Ai Min Zhang), 2009
Located in Qinghai Province, also, home of the artist, on the Tibetan Plateau, Ta'er Temple was the birthplace of Sumatikirti (Tsonkhapa in Tibetan), founder of the Gelukpa Sect of Tibetan Buddhism. It's first structure was built in 1379 and the temple, one of the six major temples of Gelukpa Buddhism, was built during the Ming Dynasty.
The inverted bowl dagoba tower, a typical motif of Buddhist architecture and the focal point of the painting, is one of a number in the temple complex. A monk is seen walking through the complex, guiding our eye to other details. A Bo tree, the sacred tree of Buddhism, frames the scene from the right. The colors are vibrant but cool, and there is much impasto and other detailing that combine to make this painting so special. Dapu said he painted the scene at dusk in the winter time to try to capture the mysterious feeling of the temple complex.
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