Interview with Arnold Chang

August 13, 2019
Video Transcript

A Chinese art curator, researcher, scholar, and teacher of Chinese painting and connoisseurship. Chang served for many years as Vice President and Director of Chinese Paintings at Sotheby’s, where he is presently a consultant. Chang’s paintings have been exhibited internationally and are in the permanent collections of many museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, British Museum, Asian Art Museum, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, and etc.



All Is Not Lost -14494


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An Everyday Universe


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[Transcript Start]


the term landscape which is common

translation of shine-free it's not

exactly the same meaning as we talk

about Western landscape painting

john-boy - and Roy wah is really much

more of an intellectual kind of

understanding and depiction of nature



so tan Shui is just a symbol of the

universe of nature


classical Chinese painting the line

itself has a certain quality it's not

used only to describe or outline a shape

or a form it's also you the line itself

is what the form is made of so the idea

is that you're taking you know your

experience of nature and combining it

with your experience of studying and

looking at other paintings and then

creating your own world that is relies

on the use of the brush to create lines

and dots and when we say brushwork it's

not just simply lines it's any marks

that the brush make and it's a very very

deep and sensitive medium because you're

working with wet ink on an absorbent


there's no erasing so every stroke will

be visible

training your eye to see the subtle

nuances of ink tone light dark dry wet

it's mainly an art form of ink which is

very nuanced very subtle the most

important part is the actual drawing

with direction and studying Chinese

fingers has actually allowed me to learn

more about myself so it's really just

kind of finding a way to express certain

feelings and certain understandings

about nature and the relationship of man

to nature that you put onto paper in

other words I'm not so so much concerned

about the finished product that's

important for somebody who grew up in

the West to realize the power of Chinese

art and Chinese culture that it can

really take somebody who has completely

had no background and just kind of

pulled him in it changed my or it

allowed me to find my own identity as a


there's an is conception about tradition

that people think tradition means past

but actually tradition is Unknowing and

the opposite of tradition is not

contemporary one can be both

contemporary and traditional and in fact

in order to really understand the

tradition it's imperative that you you

find a way to make it relevant and make

it continue into the present and into

the future


[Transcript End][English (auto-generated)]

“ There is a misconception about tradition. People think tradition means past, but actually tradition is ongoing. And the opposite of tradition is not contemporary. One can be both contemporary and traditional. In fact, in order to really understand tradition, it is imperative that you find a way to make it relevant and make it continue into the present and the future. “ 


Fu Qiumeng Fine Art presents “Interview with Arnold Chang.” The video was made in conjunction with the show of Arnold Chang and Michael Cherney at the University Museum and Art Gallery of the University of Hong Kong, entitled From 2 Arises 3: The Collaborative Works of Arnold Chang and Michael Cherney. In this interview, you will hear about Arnold Chang’s understanding of Chinese landscape painting, brushwork, and the medium of ink painting.


Arnold Chang’s Studio in Lake Parsippany Arnold Chang


You will also hear Arnold Chang talk about his painting practice in relation to his identity as a Chinese American, as well as his conception of the relationship between the traditional and the contemporary.


A Chinese art curator, researcher, scholar, and teacher of Chinese painting and connoisseurship, Arnold Chang received traditional literati painting training in his early life. He applies the materials, tools and techniques that were widely used in China since the 10th century to create; and is dedicated to exploring the beauty of balance in water, ink, brushwork, and linear rhythm. His work includes ink linear experiments, abstract landscape, and collaborative works that combine photography and painting.