Great Passion Comes with Age, Chung-Chuan Cheng's Art Song After 60 / Viviane Lee

Chung-Chuan Cheng (b. 1931), a female Taiwanese artist, was born in Hsin-Chu City, the so-called “Windy City”. She has had a great passion for art since her teens. After finishing the B.F.A. study at National Taiwan Normal University, she participated in the “Fifth Moon Group” set up with several alumni artists in 1957. However, in the same year, the artist stopped to show her considerate talent as she chose to be married and moved to Japan. While being involved in being a housewife, she read lots of classics and religious books in her free time. Due to an inextinguishable passion for art in mind, the artist was intent on painting again in her sixties. Thus, she has exhibited her works in both Japan and Taiwan in recent decades. The artist enjoys painting and life so much that her sufferings from the minor ailments can be relieved. Last year, the kind-hearted artist donated many works to charity at her hometown. Chung-Chuan Cheng is such a remarkable and honorable artist in Taiwan.

People have different pursuits at different stages of life. The youngsters put emphasis on their appearances; the middle-aged concentrate on their careers; the elderly look for the contentment and peace of the mind. By the end of 1980s, Chung-Chuan Cheng was near sixty but never dismissed the wonderful memories of painting. She takes for granted that her art inspirations come from “a choice, a pursuit, a dialogue, an exploration, a satisfaction, or an impressive experience….” Her works can be defined as “between abstract and realistic” expressions. The artist is not fond of making an outline for the paintings. The reason is that she believes that the composition and subject for a work would be made by one’s “inner self”. This enthusiastic, mysterious, or even religious “inner power” is how she sincerely faces her inner part and creations. In this “Mother Universe”, every life has beauty as well as dignity, so most artists devote their whole life to seek the answers for humans to be in harmony with the environment and other beings.

As appreciating Chung-Chuan Cheng’s paintings, it is obvious for viewers to discover that she adopts only a few colors for each work, such as red, yellow, black and white. Besides, her fluid strokes are like strong wind, floating clouds, flowing rivers, or even fireworks. In the work “Celebration”, the image is similar to a fantastic moment that fireworks set off in the night sky. In the painting “Gloomy”, the female figure has a blurred face, but viewers can guess her emotions upon the flying snow on the background. In her work “Adoring”, the image that two plants seem to “shake hands” by a leaf, implies friendship or love. Upon the work “Innocent”, there is a lovely white flower with the golden pollen, compared to the seeds of a dandelion, eager to “fly” and start a journey into the unknown. Viewers can also see life-force from the paintings “Pleasant” and “Playful”, in which the cloud-like images can be associated with the cycle of Yin-Yang.

Chung-Chuan Cheng’s paintings are full of self-character and inner-strength, so viewers will realize that her large but delicate strokes contain infinite Eastern philosophy. She is such an admirable artist, has a wave of nostalgia and loves art with life. Her art passions are close to the lyrics of a Taiwanese folk song, “If I open the door of mind, I can see my sweet hometown; if I open the window of mind, I can see my young memories…”