Vivid foliage suspends Xiao Wang’s portraits in eerie tension – Colossal

by The Insights


#painting #plants #portraits #Xiao Wang

“Portrait, October” (2022), oil on canvas, 41 x 54 inches. All images © Xiao Wang, shared with permission

Ginkgo leaves intertwined with purple, sprigs of blue eucalyptus, and ferns glowing bright orange veil Xiao Wang’s portraits with a subtle unreality. As if illuminated by fluorescent light, the oil paintings depict calm, introspective, and intimate moments between the artist and the subjects, who rest among lush vegetation.

In a note to Colossal, Wang shares that he continually strives for both contrast and balance. He maintains a relationship with each person he paints, be it friends, his partner or himself, and their real connections emerge through the unearthly palettes. “I want to create an eerie feel by distorting natural colors and creating sharp contrast,” he shares. “That’s why there are so many dark tones against light tones, purple and red against green and blue.”

The use of vivid colors also energizes the works and adds to the underlying unease and anxiety of the otherwise languid subjects, which seem suspended in daydreams and transient states. “I think I try to walk between realism and expressionism, which means that my work is deeply based on naturalistic observations and often maximalist technique, but also enhanced by expressive colors and surreal settings,” he says. .

Wang, who was born in China and is currently based in New York, has a solo show scheduled for July at PM/AM in London, and you can find more of her work and studio previews on Instagram.

A person is resting on a table while another is looking into a cup against a cactus background

“Hangover” (2021), oil on canvas, 44 x 40 inches

A woman rests her head on her arms on a table with a plum tree above

“Spaced in, Space out #2” (2023), oil on canvas, 40 x 32 inches

A cat walks on a table with a lush bouquet, a man sits at the right edge

“Monkey Mind” (2022), oil on canvas, 58 x 44 inches

two people rest their heads on a table with a lit candle in the center

“The passing hours” (2022), oil on canvas, 60 x 48 inches

Two people kiss in front of a purple tinted ivy covered tree

“The sound of cicadas” (2022), oil on canvas, 60 x 80 inches

A man sleeps on a table with orange foliage in the background

“Slumber-Dusk” (2020), oil on canvas, 44 x 58 inches

#painting #plants #portraits #Xiao Wang

Do stories and artists like this matter to you? Become a colossal member today and support independent art publishing for as little as $5 a month. You’ll connect with a community of like-minded readers who are passionate about contemporary art, read ad-free articles and newsletters, support our interview series, get discounts and early access to our print versions limited edition, and much more. Join now!

You may also like

Leave a Comment

About Us

The Insights is a top leading multimedia news magazine curating a variety of topics and providing the latest news and insights.

Editors' Picks


Subscribe my Newsletter for new blog posts, tips & new photos. Let's stay updated!

@2021 – All Right Reserved. Designed and Developed by our team