Studio Visit: Emily Cheng

For many artists, art is a way to express feelings and thoughts. Yet for emily cheng, art serves another function.

Like an art historian she collects images of both nature and human civilization. She then studies the images and by mimicking its styles and techniques, she gained unique insights on different time periods.

As a Chinese American artist, Emily Cheng was brought up with western art influences including modernism and abstract expressionism. When she was introduced to Dunhuang cave paintings and Chinese figurative drawings, she became fascinated by how lines could express body movement and Qi.

afterwards, Emily melded eastern and western art vocabulary in her works.

Emily’s paintings have a rational part that have concrete elements such as geometric forms that are positioned symmetrically, her works also have an emotional part in the form of abstract renderings or expressive brushstrokes.

Currently Emily Cheng is working on researching a series of images of Dongba manuscripts

They’re written as pictographic script by Chinese Naxi people of Lijiang, the Naxi people are famous for religious rituals associated with their shamanistic religion. Though at this stage, Emily doesn’t have a clear idea of how these kinds of imagery will be used in her future work, she will store it in her mind for the future…


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