Words: Charlotte Middleton
Known for her adventurous use of colour, multidisciplinary Chinese-Australian artist Louise Zhang 张露茜 has joined the growing artist stable at N.Smith Gallery, Gadigal Land/Sydney.
Zhang’s practice explores the dynamics of aesthetics, contrasting the attractive and repulsive in order to navigate senses of fear, anxiety and otherness reflecting her identity. Her work is inspired by horror cinema, Chinese mythology, and botany, adopting and placing symbols and motifs in compositions of harmonic dissonance.
As a ‘third culture kid’ with a strict Chinese-Christian upbringing, engaging with or learning about the superstitions that form such an inherent part of Chinese mythology and culture was and, at times still is, discouraged. Likewise, her teenage love of western horror films and gothic subculture – and her art making practice in general – were derided by her Chinese-Christian community. By researching and integrating these seemingly disparate sources of artistic inspiration into her works, Zhang documents her attempts at both constructing and deconstructing her own personal and cultural identity.
A finalist in the Art Gallery of NSW’s Sulman Prize 2022, Zhang’s work is held in the collections of The National Gallery of Victoria, Artbank, and The University of NSW.
The artist has upcoming solo exhibitions at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Wagga Wagga Regional Gallery, and will present her first exhibition with N.Smith Gallery in 2024.
Read our profile of Louise Zhang in Art Collector issue 101 here.
This article was posted 26 October 2022.
Image: Louise Zhang in the studio.
Featured thumbnail image: Louise Zhang, ‘Vain Hope, 2021. Acrylic on canvas, 112 x 122cm.