I’ve long been fascinated with the cross-pollination of ideas and styles between the artistic traditions of Asia and Europe. Even though they are technically on the same continent they were effectively separate worlds for much of the time their artistic methods and traditions were developing.
Now, of course, the world is melting together, connected by strands of optic fiber and jet contrails, but the traditions are being maintained in some quarters and mixed in others
Tang Wei Min is an artist from Hunan Province in China who applies the painting styles and techniques of the European masters to subject matter drawn from the traditional costume and ceremonial dress of historic China.
In paintings that carry the feeling of Baroque era European painters, particularly Rembrandt, Tang Wei Min paints rich, incisive portraits of people in decorative robes and head dress (something Rembrandt himself was quite fond of), and at times, gives a nod to his inspirations by mimicing the composition of particular paintings by Rembrandt and others, including the pose from Vermeer’s Girl With a Pearl Earring (above).
I really enjoy his Rembrandtesque chiaroscuro and great chunks of impasto white highlights, combined with the fascinating clothing and intensely portrayed faces of his sitters.
I couldn’t find a dedicated web site for the artist; I came across his work on the Art Renewal Center, and with a little digging found that he is represented by a number of galleries in China and the U.S.