C. C. Wang: Lines of Abstraction

C. C. Wang: Lines of Abstraction

Hunter College

C. C. Wang, untitled leaf from Splendid Views of Rivers and Mountains, 1995–98. Album in 19 parts, 16 painted leaves and three colophons; ink and color on paper, approximately 12 × 18 ½ inches each. Collection of Pao Yung Chao. © the Estate of C.C. Wang. Photo: Stan Narten.

January 26, 2023
C. C. Wang: Lines of Abstraction
February 2–April 29, 2023
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Opening reception: February 2, 7–9pm
Hunter College Art Galleries
Bertha and Karl Leubsdorf Gallery
132 E. 68th Street
New York, NY
United States

Born to a family of scholar-officials at the twilight of the Qing dynasty, C. C. Wang (Chi-ch’ien Wang, 1907–2003) mastered the traditional ink and brush techniques in Republican Shanghai and immigrated to New York City in 1949. There he sought to preserve the tradition of classical Chinese painting through engagement with new ideas, materials, and forms. Drawing inspiration from past masters in the history of Chinese painting, as well as New York’s artistic climate in the wake of World War II, Wang advanced breakthrough transformations in ink painting.

C. C. Wang is best known as a preeminent twentieth-century connoisseur and collector of pre-modern Chinese art, a reputation that often overshadows his own art. Held twenty years after the artist’s death, C. C. Wang: Lines of Abstraction recenters Wang’s extraordinary career on his own artistic practice to reveal an original quest for tradition and innovation in the global twentieth century. Spanning seven decades, the exhibition focuses on the artist’s distinctive synthesis of Chinese ink painting and American postwar abstraction.

C. C. Wang: Lines of Abstraction is curated by Wen-shing Chou and Daniel M. Greenberg with Hans Hofmann Graduate Curatorial Fellow Margaret Liu Clinton and was developed through a two-semester curatorial seminar at Hunter College led by Professor Wen-shing Chou with M.A. Art History students Thais Bignardi-Engstrom, Carolyn Bishop, Rawls Bolton, Jeremy Gloster, Sophie Kaufman, Emerald Lucas, Lindsey Poremba, and Mia Ye.

This exhibition and publication are made possible by the generous support of the James Howell Foundation, the Leubsdorf Fund, the Wolf Kahn Foundation and Emily Mason and Alice Trumbull Mason Foundation on behalf of artists Emily Mason and Wolf Kahn, and the Renate, Hans, and Maria Hofmann Trust.

In concert with the exhibition, the Hunter College Art Galleries are producing a comprehensive catalogue published in collaboration with the Weisman Museum of Art at the University of Minnesota and Hirmer Publishers. This book is the first retrospective monograph on the renownedartist, collector, and connoisseur C. C. Wang and features texts by scholars Wen-shing Chou, Daniel M. Greenberg, Joseph Scheier-Dolberg, and Arnold Chang with additional contributions by Hunter College Graduate Art History candidates and an undergraduate student from the University of Minnesota. Support for this publication is provided by the Wolf Kahn Foundation and Emily Mason and Alice Trumbull Mason Foundation on behalf of artists Emily Mason and Wolf Kahn.

Hunter College Art Galleries
Hunter College Art Galleries under the auspices of the Department of Art and Art History, have been a vital aspect of the New York cultural landscape since their inception over a quarter of a century ago. The galleries provide a space for critical engagement with art and pedagogy, bringing together historical scholarship, contemporary artistic practice, and experimental methodology. The Bertha and Karl Leubsdorf Gallery focuses on presenting historical and scholarly exhibitions and programming that provide new scholarship on important and often under-represented artists and art movements. Located on Hunter’s main campus, the gallery also hosts the BFA degree exhibition each semester.

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Hunter College
January 26, 2023

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