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This series of paintings blends the essence of calligraphy and abstract movement. Painted using various dilutions of oil paint on gesso, Joanne Yulan treats the oil as if it were ink or watercolour. The flicks and imprints of the traditional Chinese brushes are left purposefully, rendering the marks organic and alive. 


Where previous paintings were inspired by ancient Chinese characters, Joanne Yulan's latest oil on gesso works are influenced by her father. A renowned botanist, he travelled widely. His research trips to the forests of Borneo and Southeast Asia provided countless samples of pressed flora from which the following images are derived. Whilst her previous works portray energy and movement, this new series enjoys a more centred stillness and delicacy.


Joanne Yulan’s larger-scale works see the artist transition to oil on canvas. The colour and movement of calligraphy motifs in the background, hark back to old Chinese ceramics or even textiles. The nuances of green leaf and foliage motifs are fluid and give the impression of organic life emerging. They portray a spontaneous selection of botanical cuttings from imaginary plants, gathered to be catalogued organized and studied.


Joanne Yulan’s signature abstract artworks made with Chinese ink on handmade Indian paper are inspired by calligraphy and the fluid nature of the written word. This abstract series is based on positive and uplifting Chinese characters, words such as beauty and prosperity. By dissecting the strokes within the characters, repeating them and displacing them, they move away from words and become an abstract composition.

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