In this exhibition, as the title implies, Keyan Liang unveils his journey. However, this journey is not a simple act of travelling or merely a change in the location where one resides. Rather, this is a journey through the various influences and different traditions of creating art and at the same time, it is a form of self-reflection.

By analyzing his journey Keyan explores the concept of migrating ideas and forms of art. Having experienced different approaches to learning art both in China and Lithuania Keyan searches for common threads that might combine the different traditions. He applies both a theoretical approach to analyze the ideas and a practice-based approach to investigate through the means of painting. The act of painting becomes a useful tool in understanding if the common threads work not only on a theoretical level.

A great example of this migration of art forms can be explored through the example of the influence Van Gogh’s creative thoughts had on Keyan. Van Gogh is an important figure and a huge inspiration for Keyan, however, Van Gogh also had a variety of influences that were important to him. Keyan unveils that the Japanese woodblock printmaking tradition of “Ukiyo-e art attracted and influenced Van Gogh” [1]. Furthermore, Ukiyo-e art had close ties to the Chinese traditions of printmaking. Thus by analysing the composition, themes, use of lines and colours Keyan traces back the similarities between his creative practice, Van Gogh’s creative practice, the tradition of Ukiyo-e and even Chinese printmaking.

This exhibition is the result of this self-reflective journey and thus the spectators can find traces of a variety of influences in Keyan Liang’s works. As the artist states “my thinking and creation are also the result of the collision of Eastern and Western art” [2].

This exhibition is part of the master level diploma defence of Site-specific Art (previously Monumental Arts) at Vilnius Academy of Arts. The defence will take place on the 25th of June at 10.00. Keyan came to study in Lithuania from China in 2018.

dr. Vygintas Orlovas

[1] Keyan Liang, Impact of Ukiyo-e on (my creative practice through) Van Gogh, Vilnius Academy of Arts, 2020, p. 17.
[2] Keyan Liang, Impact of Ukiyo-e on (my creative practice through) Van Gogh, Vilnius Academy of Arts, 2020, p. 30.