One of China’s most exciting new voices in contemporary painting, Liang Wei has been developing a
unique form of abstract art that combines influences from both modern and classical traditions.
Avoiding any conceptual or thematic approaches to painting, Liang’s compositions start by sourcing
images from a large range of subject matter in order to tear them apart and reassemble them into new
forms from her imagination. These compositions are the starting point of a meticulous painting
process that uses a variety of materials such as acrylic paint, Chinese ink, and watercolour pencils. The
resulting works feel like uncanny topographical visions haunted by echoes of classical Chinese
landscapes. These abstract geographies are deeply immersing owing to the way original images have
been deconstructed. Hints of recognizable forms appear and multiply as one scans the surface of the
canvas as our eyes attempt to make sense of the abstraction. As a result, new and unintended forms
seem to emerge and then disappear in the chaos.
The source images that Liang Wei uses mirror her interest in history, classical art and architecture,
contemporary urban environments, and cinema. Each work seems to construct a separate imaginary
world with its own energy and reasons for coming into being. One can almost discern hidden realities
waiting to break out from obscurity into existence, like several films all happening at once in the
background of our minds. There is a contrast between the violence and morphogenic qualities of
these works, as some paintings seem to be in the process of self-creation or destruction, while others
have found a contemplative sense of equilibrium. In these new paintings Liang Wei has created
strange new realities that are based on, but alien to, our own.