|By Brenda Louie – Farhat Art Museum Collection|
This large Mural by Brenda measures 82 X180 inch oil on canvas. It is one of the largest paintings by Brenda Louie owned by the Farhat Art Museum.
Brenda N.Louie. In her statement Brenda expresses her own experience as an artist of two cultures and the effect that it has on her work.
As a person trained in two cultural traditions, I seek to demonstrate the uniqueness of cultural experience and to explore experiential similarities as an approach toward an artistic language. I use elements ancient Chinese hieroglyphs and writing in concert with modern western art theory. My goal is to transcend ethnic barriers through artistic expression. I intend to extend cultural experience through interpretation. I do not intend to dilute it through amalgamation.
My work attempts to illuminate a universal past by recreating it in the significant symbols of specific experience. In my early works, I introduced reinvented hieroglyphs as a symbolic medium in my paintings. These glyphs became unique icons, no longer meaningful in a linguistic context. I used repetitious writing over painting. The writing was repetitively destroyed, buried, excavated, and rewritten in a new interpretive form and context, yet essentially related to the prior form and context. This process and resulting images become a metaphor for the turbulent patterns of social and cultural change. My works make an affirmative statement concerning the ability to reconcile disparate cultural and aesthetic experiences.
In the recent works, “The Lotus Series”, I started with an idea derived from and ancient poem entitled “The Voice of the Lotus Lover.” In this writing, the nature of the Lotus is disclosed as a metaphor for a human of perfect character and integrity. I investigate the use of spontaneous free Chinese calligraphic brush strokes on a textual western canvas. I am influenced by Chinese calligraphic gestural movement. The works of Mark Tobey and Brice Marden have provided a validation in the free use Chinese writings. I am interested in an approach that once also fascinated Impressionists: the concept of light and color. I apply this through interaction with the nature of the metaphoric lotus.
I am intimately aware of the transformational possibilities of the Chinese characters. I am free to manipulate the forms into the desired effect that in my work always have a suggestive rather than a descriptive purpose.