Visit Artspace 8 Gallery to see Li Hu: A Visual Summary - an exhibition to honor the life and work of prolific Chinese-American painter Li Hu. The opening reception for this event will be held Thursday, April 11th from 6 to 9pm.
"To me, painting is a way to escape from reality. It’s my freedom of expression, where I can let my imagination run wild. In the practice of figurative painting, I study the unknown, exploring uncertainties and worlds of infinite possibilities rather than focusing on the narrative image making."
Li Hu spent his life dedicated to education and the creation of art. As a child in Shanghai, he was constantly exposed to sources of artistic inspiration from his father, a designer, and his uncle who produced illustrated books. During China's Cultural Revolution he was sent to the countryside, but returned years later to study art at Shanghai University's College of Fine Arts. After graduating in 1986, he was hired as a professor. Four years later, he moved with his family to the United States to further his studies, and received his MFA from the University of South Dakota in 1993. The following year he was hired as a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh where he spent the rest of his career until his retirement in 2013. Three years later, Li Hu passed away after a long battle with cancer.
Li Hu's work is marked by optimism - having viewed himself as an idealist in a postmodern era that has undergone many cultural, social, and intellectual changes. He used his imagination to interpret the interactions between intellectual and experiential history, and mythology and translating them to monumental works that capture the eyes of the viewer. Grounded in the Chinese tradition of his youth and Western painting practices, Li Hu enjoyed the experience of self-destruction, conflict, challenge and risk-taking experienced during the process of painting.
Throughout his life, Li Hu participated in more than a hundred solo and group shows in the United States and internationally. His paintings have been collected by many public and private collectors and he has received over ten different awards from national juried competitions. In 2018, Ningbo Museum of Art in China established the Li Hu Art Gallery to display his major works.