Artworks by Qiu Shihua

White Scenery by Qiu Shihua

80 x 355 cm
Oil on Canvas

Field by Qiu Shihua

60 x 140 cm
Oil on Canvas

White Scenery by Qiu Shihua

129 x 435 cm
Oil on Canvas

Untitled III by Qiu Shihua

95 x 55 cm
Oil on Canvas

Untitled II by Qiu Shihua

150 x 292 cm
Oil on Canvas

Untitled I by Qiu Shihua

150 x 292 cm
Oil on Canvas

Qiu Shihua

邱世华

1940
born in Zizhong, Sichuan Province, China
lives and works in Beijing and Shenzhen, China

At first glance, the paintings of Chinese artist Qiu Shihua seem to be monochrome, completely white canvases. Yet upon closer inspection, vast landscapes emerge from the painted surface which, depending on where the viewer is standing, either reveal an increasing number of details or slip away again before his eyes. Only through long, intense examination is it possible gain a full perception of Qiu Shihua’s complex white paintings.

With this mode of representation, the artist categorically questions the moment of visibility in painting. Qiu Shihua’s white landscapes oscillate between the Western idea of abstraction and reduction on the one side, and the far Eastern Taoist concepts of repetition and emptiness on the other.

The discrepancy between the apparent simplicity of the paintings and their diversity of layers waiting to be unveiled is precisely what makes “White Field” an unusually encapsulating show. The content of each painting is not apparent but lies under a white, glazed surface, each to be explored in a manner comparable to the process of trying to orientate oneself in an unknown place. As none of the pieces have titles, much is left to the eyes of the beholder, and the viewer must make use of their personal apparatus of associations in order to make sense of the pieces.
Disorienting the viewer is not something Qui Shihua is afraid to toy with. The disorientation forces the viewer to slow down and sets a special mood that is a prerequisite for entering the world within his paintings. “In fact the landscapes in my works are just a prelude,” the artist states. ”That is, they are significant as a form of guidance. They are a form of mental imagery. Landscape offers an opportunity.”

The dominant use of white makes it tempting to place Qiu in the company of the monochrome experiments of post war European painters. However, Qiu discerns himself from Western modernism and Chinese Shan Shui both, just as he claims to be neither an abstract nor a landscape painter. Although Qiu thus appoints himself with a somewhat of a status of artistic hermit, his combination of Eastern and Western inspirations necessarily form a context for his work. In the early ‘90s, Qiu shifts from aquarelle and ink on paper to oil on canvas, a shift not merely mechanical but a step away from Shan Shui tradition. Along with his explorations of abstraction and palette of these years, it is evident that Qiu’s travels in Europe form a turning point in his technique. He allows himself to more freely interpret his background in Shan Shui and appropriate Western influences, positioning him in an interesting middle ground between the two. In post-Cultural Revolution China, Qiu’s works play into the process of modernizing traditional Chinese culture in a new context, just as they provide an alternative to Western modernist painting.

Selected Solo Exhibitions
2015
Aura of Nature, Galerie Karsten Greve, Cologne, Germany

2013
Qiu Shihua – New Works, Galerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, Switzerland
St. Moritz Art Masters Winter Exhibition, Reformierte Dorfkirche, St. Moritz, Switzerland

2012
Qiu Shihua. Landschaft, Licht und Stille, Museum Pfalzgalerie Kaiserslautern, Kaiserslautern, Germany
Qiu Shihua, Galerie Urs Meile, Beijing, China
Qiu Shihua. White Field, Hamburger Bahnhof, Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin, Germany

2010
QIU SHIHUA, Galerie Urs Meile, Beijing, China

2009
Qiu Shihua – New Works, Galerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, Switzerland

2008
Qiu Shihua, Shanghai Gallery of Art, Shanghai, China

2007
Qiu Shi-Hua, Galerie Luis Campaña, Cologne, Germany

2006
Galerie 75 Faubourg, Paris, France

2005
Galerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, Switzerland
Qiu Shi-Hua, Galerie Luis Campaña, Cologne, Germany
Insight: Paintings by Qiu Shihua, Chambers Fine Art, New York, USA
Vision of Fields by Qiu Shihua, Hanart TZ Gallery, Hong Kong, China

2004
Qiu Shihua, Künstlerverein Malkasten, Düsseldorf, Germany

2003
Galerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, Switzerland
Galerie Luis Campaña, Cologne, Germany

2002
White Landscape, Prüss & Ochs Gallery, Berlin, Germany

2001
Landscape – Painting on the Edge of Visibility, Galleria OTSO, Espoo, Finland
The New York Kunsthalle, New York, USA

2000
Galerie Urs Meile, Lucerne, Switzerland
Landscape – Painting on the Edge of Visibility, Galerie Rudolfinum, Prague, Czech Republic;
Galerie Sternberk, Sternberk, Czech Republic

1999
Qiu Shi-hua, Kunsthalle Basel, Basel, Switzerland

1997
Hanart TZ Gallery, Hong Kong, China
Hanart (Taipei) Gallery, Taipei, Taiwan

1995
Hanart TZ Gallery, Hong Kong, China

1991
Hanart TZ Gallery, Hong Kong, China
Hanart (Taipei) Gallery, Taipei, Taiwan