On Tuesday, October 23rd curator Ellen Huang and internationally known artist Ming Ren spoke to USF students and guests about the new art display in Thacher gallery. Ellen Huang gave an interesting lecture on the history of porcelain in China and how the market has progressively changed over the years. Ming Ren spoke about his life as an artist and explained how he completed the abstract ink pieces that are now on display in Thacher Gallery.
During the lecture, Ellen Huang explained that it is a common misconception to think that Chinese dishware is one of the main pieces that is produced in China.
“There were different techniques that were used that inspired aesthetics of blue and white dishware in China” said Ellen Huang. It became tradition to make ceramic pieces in the colors blue and white. The different ceramic pieces in Thacher Gallery challenge the traditional look of decoration. Ellen Huang says, “This exhibition explores the phrase ‘Made in China’”
The ceramic pieces displayed in Thacher Gallery are collected from the Asian Art Museum, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Instituto Nacional de Anthropologia y Historia and a private collector. The varieties of pieces are antiques that age back from the 18th century all the way to modern day artwork.
There’s additional exhibit in Thacher Gallery of the artwork of Chinese artist, Ming Ren. He started painting at the young age of nine and his artwork did not become serious until he was a teenager. Ming Ren says, “My parents were scientists. They did not support me. They said it was dangerous to be an artist. I was very poor”. Dedicated to his new vocation, Ming Ren attended college for painting and spent four years in school without any holidays.
Ming Ren grew up during the Cultural Revolution and his beginning paintings included political figures. He said, “My first artwork was an advertising project”. His political artwork later shaped into his modern artwork that ties together Western and Eastern figures.
Ren described his art collection in Thacher gallery as a “happy accident.” He told the guests that he experimented with this collection and had no true idea of how the artwork was supposed to turn out in the end but “used labwork and tested” with different acrylic paints and art colors.
The gallery will be displaying the ceramic pieces and artwork of Ming Ren in Thacher Gallery until December 16th. Be sure to stop by and view the artwork… you might be surprised at what you will find.
If you missed the lecture given by Ellen Huang make sure to check out her tour and reception in Thacher Gallery on Monday, November 5th. The event starts at 12 and ends at 1pm.