In collaboration with art critic Rob Perrée, Readytex Art Gallery has developed an informative initiative: An Eye for Art. Once every two weeks Rob Perrée discusses a work of art from the collection of Readytex Art Gallery. This week he talks about ‘Love Mood’, giclée on paper, 56 cm wide x 63 cm high, 2009, from Paul Chang.
When seeing a painting with flowers I am inclined to think about the work of Georgia O’Keeffe. A painting of hers, with flowers, was sold late last year for € 40.000.000. A record amount for work from a female artist. She not only made of her flowers odes to nature – nature in Santa Fe, New Mexico – but also erotic, sensual shapes, which have an irresistible appeal.
Paul Chang certainly does not presume to compete with O’Keeffe. She is one of a kind. Yet the distance between her and Chang is less significant than it seems. He lives and works in a neighborhood – Miami – where the sun and nature are also inextricably linked. That combination results in colors that they are envious of in my chilly, catty homeland. Chang fully exploits them in this work. The colors are crucial to the atmosphere that the work evokes. The title indicates that love was the driving force behind that atmosphere. The love of the one and the eroticism of the other, they are in any case related.
O’Keeffe painted mostly from reality, but by manipulating that reality somewhat, making it slightly rounder, coloring it in some, also literally, she brought a different dimension to it. Chang might use reality as his point of departure, but for him it is sufficient to give only an impression thereof. Moreover, he seems to compose shapes and colors. Reality is made subordinate to the composition. He does not choose the photo-realism of his American colleague. In his work the brush strokes are clearly visible, sometimes mixed, and they ensure a certain liveliness.
The new works of Paul Chang are abstracter than those in the series which ‘Love Mood’ (2009) is part of. That creates curiosity about the further development of his oeuvre. The use of color is a constant though.
TEXT Rob Perrée, Amsterdam, April 2015
TRANSLATION Cassandra Gummels-Relyveld, 2015
Want to see this and other work of Paul Chang ‘up close and personal’? That’s possible at Readytex Art Gallery, Steenbakkerijstraat 30, Paramaribo. www.readytexartgallery.com. For more information about Paul Chang please visit the website http://readytexartgallery.com/paulchang.
This edition of An Eye for Art has been sent as a RAG-mailing on April 22, 2015 and was published in Kunst en Cultuur in de Ware Tijd on April 22, 2015.
Because really looking at art and understanding art are not always obvious and easy to do, we hope that these regular reviews will at least offer you some insight into the process. You will get to see how a connoisseur looks at art, discusses it, and then links the work to others within the international art world.
Of course you can only truly judge a work of art when you are actually standing in front of it yourself. We therefore hope to see you soon in Readytex Art Gallery and are eager to hear what you think of this artwork, and which other works of art you find yourself drawn to. Please note that the artworks discussed are still available for purchase at the time that the review is published.
Rob Perrée is art historian and works as freelance writer, art critic and curator, specialized in contemporary (Afro-) American art, African art, Surinamese art and art using new media. His work has appeared in countless catalogues, books, magazines and newspapers. He is editor of Sranan Art Xposed, editor in chief of Africanah.org and a member of the editing team of Pf Photo Magazine. His website: http://robperree.com.