White Space Art Asia is proud to present ‘Traces of Innocence’, a collection from Henan native and artist, Zhang Wen.
A collection nostalgic for the years gone past, Zhang’s works are an immortalisation of the ephemerality of youth. Dotted with playful figures that dance across vast landscapes, her oeuvre celebrates the simplicity of childhood. Her characters explore rivers, seas, and rousing mountain valleys, drawing us to a time unadulterated by the complexities of adulthood. Adolescence, the centrepiece of Zhang’s works, is nurtured in the heart of nature.
Bodies of water are a common motif throughout Zhang’s works, where rivers and waterfalls are places of repose, recreation, and exploration. The most notable quality that these sites share, however, is their role as a sanctuary for Zhang’s characters to live to their heart’s content. These places are where mankind and nature can co-exist in blissful harmony. With water’s association with cleansing and purity, it is only apt that it is so prevalent in a collection that dreams of childhood innocence.
And beyond these bodies of water lies an expanse of far-away skies and boundless mountains. The far-flung distance between the often solitary figures and the sweeping landscape parallels the coming-of-age journey that everyone experiences as they age. Standing at the precipice of the vast unknown, with their heads tilted upwards, Zhang paints a relationship of the adolescent at the cusp of adulthood.
A glimpse at Zhang’s oeuvre and one can experience the utopic essence of growing up- one that immaculately balances leisure and learning, and guided by the natural tools that the earth has gifted us.
Consulting the Winds
29 x 42.5 cm
Chinese Ink on Paper