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Tang Contemporary Art, Hong Kong
2018.02.07 Wed - 2018.03.15 Thu
Opening Exhibition
10/F, H Queen's, 80 Queen's Road Central, Hong Kong 香港中环皇后大道中80号10楼
Opening Hours
Tuesday to Saturday, 11am – 7pm
Beili Wang

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Untitled Poems of Theodore Rousseau
Tang Contemporary Art
[Press Release]

Tang Contemporary Art Hong Kong is proud to announce the opening of “Untitled Poem of Théodore Rousseau,” a solo exhibition for noted Thai contemporary artist Natee Utarit, on February 7, 2018. This exhibition features a series that the artist created in the Fontainebleau forest in France, seeking the wonder of the imagery and subjects of landscape painting as a homage to Théodore Rousseau, the leader of the Barbizon school.

Natee Utarit is a noted artist active in the international contemporary art world, with a deep yet wide-ranging artistic practice. He stresses the links between painting, photography, and Western classical art as a key method in exploring painting as a mode of image production. He uses complex and ambiguous images and rich metaphors in traditional still lifes that emphasize the current Thai social and political landscape. His work has been collected by many important art institutions and foundations around the world.

Natee Utarit-01最终版

From spring to autumn 2017, Natee Utarit lived in Barbizon, a southern suburb of Paris, France, where he spent several months making art. Living and working in the nearby Fontainebleau forest was extremely stimulating for his thought and artwork, keeping him in a state of constant excitement about his art. The works exhibited here depict the oak trees in Fontainebleau forest. In confronting nature and the self, Natee Utarit focuses on the relationship between concept and subject, as well as the relationship between a conceptual perspective on landscape painting and visions of the world or space. He always attempted to use different times and places, working with a style and technique that was different from the past and that persistently expanded and remolded his way of thinking about landscape painting. “Every person has a different perception of reality and completeness. I experienced the landscape as I worked; it was a particularly fresh and solid experience.”


Oak trees were a perpetual theme for the Barbizon school. For Natee Utarit, the work of Théodore Rousseau, the leader of the Barbizon school, contains a “cool melancholy.” Oak trees, the protagonists of the painting, and the surrounding environment setting them off represent the natural landscape, and reflect the artist’s personality and aesthetic taste. Natee Utarit’s work is deeply influenced by the history of Western painting. In his work, he studies and deconstructs Renaissance-era classical oil paintings and postmodernist styles, but he also ponders his own cultural position and identity as a Thai artist. In this all-new oak tree series, Natee Utarit attempts to use the Barbizon school’s methods of landscape painting to express his perceptions of poetry and freedom. Through expressive brushwork and technique, he breaks with prejudices about the themes of landscape painting. He captures the soul of these organisms, interpreting the oak trees with his own style and technique. These landscape works depart from his previous, purely narrative modes. Here, he integrates an observational method into an artistic medium.

For Natee Utarit, the expressive methods of contemporary painting are no longer limited to presenting real objects; he perceives and deciphers the elements of the objects beneath the surface. Through his work, the creator and the viewer free themselves from their own obstacles, and shift their gaze to the stories and spirits behind the image. Natee Utarit’s independent, majestic oak trees reflect the hundred-year history of landscape painting, as well as the simplicity and profundity of man looking at nature.