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Spirit by: Q Wang - Book Review

June 23, 2011 | Comments: 0 | Views: 182

Spirit: The Paintings of Q. Wang is a collection of contemporary paintings by Q. Wang, a current resident of Southern California. In this "Coffee table" style of high-quality art-book of 44 selected works of artist Q. Wang created during the period from 2006 through 2010, are displayed with only title and date of origin; leaving the viewer to "feel the art", or as stated in the Preface, "hear the music" without the distraction of a narrative.

Working with acrylic over conventional sized canvases, Q. Wang's work is easily categorized as being modern art, abstract, using color and lines in very unique and impressive ways. Although, admittedly Q. Wang openly discusses his attraction to the art of Maurice Utrillo, I sense some subliminal influence by other renowned artists. I feel the American legend Alexander Calder aligned with his floating shapes; along with aspects reminiscent of Andy Warhol in hisHillary Clinton portrait; Pablo Picasso and Vincent Van Gough with some cubism. This said, the originality of Q. Wang stands on his own merit with a fundamental Asian influence.

Just as it is obvious to a viewer if a picture on a wall is hung at an angle, not being straight, it is amazingly impressive how parallel, perpendicular, round and exact the geometric shapes are within Q. Wang's work. He definitely has a highly advanced mathematical spatial relation aspect to his art, resulting in hypnotizing introspection and, in my case, a highly emotional impact. His core talent brings simplicity in shape and form. One of, if not my true favorite, is titled, Woman. In it, Q. Wang takes a red circle, two red domes and a red triangle placed over horizontal colored backgrounds bringing to mind a "nude" like some Hermann Rorschach inkblot test revealing my own thoughts. Other favorites of mine are titled Kiss and Lovers, where two "stick figures" embrace each other, one yellow and one red, over a green background. Just as universal highway and building signage uses stick figures to represent men and women with respect to safety or even a restroom, these figures are international and global in its representation of the love within humanity.

I could go on and talk about Q. Wang's use of dimensional relations in his landscapes, or his obvious sense of passion for a lady he painted, or even the comedy within his work; but to understand his work you simply need to see it. This book is beyond excellent as a showcase for his talent. Next to having the opportunity to visit a gallery with his work, this book can be easily bought and will truly embellish the library of any art-loving collector. As the famous French film producer Jean-Luc Godard said, "It's not where you take things from - it's where you take them to." Q. Wang has taken me further into the appreciation of my surroundings, people, and love. That is what art is all about.

Reviewed by: Gary R. Sorkin

Gary R. Sorkin is the Senior Editor for Pacific Book Review. Please visit Pacific Book Review at:

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