Jing Qiu

ArtAscent Silver Artist of the 2021 Landscapes call for artists.

Squares, rectangles, and vanishing circles travel through the paintings of Jing Qiu. He explores lines and geometric forms, light, and shadow and leads the audience on a personal journey to the softest structure of their imagination.

Let’s dive into a short reflection on geometric shapes in the arts throughout history: one significant work is called “Black Square” by Kasimir Malewitsch, which was first exhibited around 1915. This iconic piece of art simply depicts a black square on a white canvas. It marked, for many, the birth of non-representational art. Similar geometry and structure appeared in the contemporary works of Josef Albers, Piet Mondrian, and Gotthard Graubner, who took advantage of the style proposed by Malewitsch.

Squares in art evoke feelings of solidity and stability. On the other hand, circles suggest emotions, liquid mobility in contrast to the rigid nature of a square. Such opposing examples can be found in Jing’s series Disorganized Desire and The Fault of Thought. His paintings combine these images to create fluidity through colours merging – like soul mates – alongside a sharpness of lines, capturing the audience’s eyes and letting them rest on some kind of peaceful stability. Through this way of creating, the effect of composition forms the relationship between one individual part and the picture as a whole. These intentional placements of contrasting and sometimes colliding geometric forms can be witnessed in Jing’s work: clear and powerful images can still be softened through the ambiguity of light and shadow.

Alongside his use of form and colour, Jing also includes materials like sand, gravel, and even paper, adding texture and a third dimension to his works. These details create a more vivid environment for spectators to engage with, triggering memories of past travels, human connections and opening the freedom for discoveries deep inside ourselves. This is made possible by routes formed and deformed in each painting, inviting us to guide our thoughts beyond habitual thinking. These images allow their spectators to let down their guard, a guard that holds them upright during the social norms of everyday life. This can evoke feelings of distress, but at the same time, it may encourage a new and powerful endurance within our minds to construct an alternative landscape of creativity and a sense of self. Artistic work of this kind can be a wonderful tool to accept change and form a new way of seeing the unknown with welcoming eyes.

Jing’s paintings invite wonderment, a journey through various paths and environments, be they imaginative or in the here and now, and by providing a base from which our minds are free to run wild. Jing Qiu (1998, China) is an independent artist living and working in Shenzhen, Guangdong. His artistic mediums include painting, photography, video, installation, sculpture, and experimental art. His works have been exhibited in China, London (UK), the USA, Canada, Milan (Italy), Spain, Ukraine, amongst other countries and regions.

Jing Qiu is the Silver Artist of the ArtAscent Landscapes call for artists. To see the full body of work and profile, get a copy of the ArtAscent Art & Literature Journal Landscapes issue.


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