Matthew is a pretty constant visitor here at the studio this week. He is in writing mode, and so he has been working here on his computer while I paint. Snoopy comes along with him, for a welcome break from the city.
Earlier this week Matt and I made a trip to Yashow Market for slacks and shirts. The Market is known for its five floors of vendors selling mostly clothes, but also toys, pens, jewelry, and about anything else you can think of. It is always fun to shop there, and a place to hone your negotiating and haggeling skills. Everything is negotiable, and even after you finally agree on a price, the vendor will ask you to PLEEEZE pay a little higher price because you drove SUCH a hard bargain. Yeah, sure.
The Red Gate Gallery had an opening on Sunday for a new exhibition of work by Chen Jiaye and Zhang Zheyi: Highly Prized Flowers. I’d met both these artists last year, and was very impressed by their work. Chen Jiaye incorporaes traditional images and technique in his work, while Zhang Zheyi is more contemporary, in the meticulous imnagery against a solid color field. A year ago I visited Zheyi’s studio and a number of his friend’s studios in Song Zhuang Village – a high point of that China visit.
After the Exhibition, Brian Wallace, owner of the Red Gate, invited the Residents to join about 60 others for a banquet at a large restaurant near the Worker’s Stadium.
The restaurant was not far from Matt’s apartment and the Sanlitun area, so it was easy to walk over to join him at the Bookworm, where he was in the middle of a jam session with friends.
The backdrop for all this is the Open Studio that we Residents are planning for Saturday, the 29th to show our work. Suzanna and Petra have been working to prepare the walls of the huge studio we will be using, and thinking about how to arrange the artwork so it all shows well. Looks like I will have four paintings for the show. More on that another time.
Finally: I keep hearing about the cold temperatures and snow on the east coast. Here we have shirt-sleeve weather, the grass and bushes are greener every day, and buds on the trees are ready to burst open.
On the other hand, we are back into successive gray days, and I am wearing a mask when I go outdoors for a walk or a bike ride.