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GAN YU
 

I was born into a family of artists in Shanghai, China, and at the age of six, I started to practice Chinese calligraphy. I was fascinated by its aesthetic structures and the rhythmical beauty of its strokes. This was the first and most direct influence on my artistic career.

Twenty-two years ago, I came to the USA for postgraduate studies. Since that time, I have pursued an artistic path that combines my Chinese cultural background with contemporary Western concepts of art. Between 1984 and1990, I spent four years teaching painting and drawing at The College of Fine Arts, Shanghai University, and two years working on my master’s degree in studio art at Minnesota State University. During that period, I keenly felt how the art of East and West reflected the different perspectives and ideologies of each society, and how these sentiments were often contradictory. They seemed like two rivers traveling parallel courses in the same world of art. My challenge has been to find a way to blend these two currents conceptually and technically in my artwork. And this has compelled me to think differently and to find a unique style of painting.

Living through various decades in different countries, I have been motivated by my experiences in a changing world. Thus my art, while founded on my own individuality and technical experiments, is also continuously informed by my surroundings. In recent years, a major focus of my work has been the different physical and cultural environments people live in as well as the chaotic social phenomena of our time. I have attempted to combine elements from the East and the West in my work to find a fresh artistic perspective and to create a channel for meaningful exchange. I plan to continue my artistic journey by exploring various styles, surfaces, and mediums to keep vital movement and energy alive in my artwork.

Professional Experience
2012-Present: Guest Professor, Shanghai Institute of Visual Art, Fudan University
2011- Present: Guest Professor, School of Art and Design, Shanghai Institute of Technology
2000-Present: Founder and Executive Director of eChinaArt.com
1984-1988: Instructor of Painting and Drawing at the College of Fine Arts, Shanghai University

Media and Publications
2012: Gan Yu, Footprints Across The Ocean, Shanghai, China: Fudan University Press.
2010: Drawings by Gan Yu Capture the Alluring Moment of Life Picture Album, New York: Universal Art Press.
2007: “Living With Art, A Story about Gan Yu, his Family and a Website He Created to Promote Chinese Art, in
Top Notch, White Plains, NY: Pearson Education.
2001: “Gan Yu and His eChinaArt.com,” Sino Vision Special Report, New York, NY.
2000: “Father and Sons,” Exhibition Review, Yale University Bulletin (Mar 24, 2000), New Haven, CT.
2000: “Asian Art Exhibition at Annual Asian Pacific Conference,” New York State University Newspaper Report, April, 2000.
1999: CNN News– Introduction to Asian Art-Connection (Founded by Gan Yu) on CNN.com, Mar 1, 1999
1999: Australian National University Library Presented Asian-Art-Connection (Founded by Gan Yu) on Their Resource Center

 

Autumn Forest (19" x 17") Chinese ink and watercolor on rice paper

Friend's Garden (19" x 17") Chinese ink and watercolor on rice paper

 

Echo (40" x 96") Mixed media on cardboard

 

Golden Pond (19" x 17") Chinese ink and watercolor on rice paper

Flying Flowers (16" x 96") Mixed media on canvas, board, glass and paper

Echo (40" x 96") Mixed media on cardboard

 Mountains in the Fall (21" x 28") Chinese ink and watercolor on rice paper

Life Drawing (20" x 28") Chinese ink and mixed media on newsprint