Yang Jiechang

born in Foshan, Guangdong Province, China in 1956
lives and works in Paris, France and Heidelberg, Germany

Taoism gave Yang Jiechang a mental and spiritual language in which to construct his work. He chose to renounce all colour, all representation, all allusion, all symbolism. Painting only in Chinese ink, and layered in places with collaged rice paper, the pictures themselves seem black across the entire surface. However, they are not uniformally so - the collaged, textured sections pick up and reflect light, while the flatter, dark edges absorb it. The simplicity of the form is rich, allowing both darkness and light to come together on a single surface.

Yang Jiechang studied at the Institute of Popular Art in Foshan, and later in Peking. In 1982 he was appointed teacher at the Academy of Arts, Canton. His training was principally in traditional Chinese painting, and the ancient technique of collage on paper. Most important, says Yang Jiechang, is that "the process of the work and its results are a kind of meditation, a kind of self-accomplishing. What they reflect and express for the recipient also belongs to the realm of meditation".