By Richard Wearn, Professor of Art

California State University, Los Angeles

The artistic practice of Mr. Hongbo is a projection of a unique and expansive mental landscape. His paintings are energized by a meta-physics that is complex and yet his paintings possess an uncomplicated beauty. In his most recent body of work new attributes of this meta-physics have emerged. The tensions of meaning that form around symbols, and that extend also to realism have been cast off. What is lost for immediacy is in fact a gain for the expression of thought and sensation - an existential clarity, that is potentiated through our projective capacities.

Hongbo creates a world existent between thought and materiality. His paintings, without the construct of representation, resonate with humanness. They are affirmed by the residue of anthropomorphism contained within the handwritten characters. In witness to the work’s interplay between a formalized psychology (as expressed in the characters) and a truly morphogenic quality, we may find for ourselves Hongbo’s intellect and vision. Each brush mark is a part of the unifying whole of the painting, each mark is inherent to the coming to expression of that whole.

What we find in Hongbo’s vision is a world of sensations that are stimulated by light and space. They are illuminated and spiritualized. These are the elements of formal experience that have been pursued by abstract artists of the west for over a century. Congregating around the canon of essentialism, these artists valued a dialectical narrative and a reductive sensibility in order to find aesthetic truths. Hongbo’s assimilation into the cultural landscape of the United States has resulted in something of unexpected value and importance. Avoiding the mimetic or mechanical adoption of stylistic patterns, Hongbo responded to his cultural reality by a gradual stripping away of the semiotic structures in his work. And in this moving away from realism, he has painted towards an abstraction that holds the intuitive components of his traditional culture, not through sign, but through the purity of mark making.

Hongbo’s work is an intuitive illumination of the energized spaces of cultural transgression and collision. It is a new abstract formulation that is intimate and yet inclusive of us all. The works are reflections of a new metaphysics, of the immanence of humanness in a world where location, time and space are falling away as determining factors of being.

Costa Mesa, California, USA. 28th September, 2019. Quattro Caffé and The Beverly Arts collaborated with La Perla, an Italian luxury fashion house, to put on a night of food and fashion that included cooking, entertainment, and fashion show that featured models from JMK Modeling Media Academy. The mayor of Costa Mesa, Katrina Foley, attended and gave a special presentation to the distinguished guests.

The guests included renowned opera singer Jingma Fan, Yuki Zhu, Director of La Perla Fashion House, Dr. George Sun and his wife Zehra Sun of MDSUN, Dr. Ji Li, President of HTTV USA, Stephen D. Christensen, Dean of the School of Business at Concordia University, Lisa Smith, prominent attorney, Robert Nobel,banking executive with his wife Clara Chen, Lucy Liu Scott, real estate agent, Dr. Bernard Franklin, art collector and philanthropist, and Yanyan Zhang, founder of F4 Beauty Center.

Domenico Grillo, an Italian chef and the General Manager of Quattro, gave a live cooking class where guests could interact and participate in the cooking. Domenico also performed throughout the night, singing songs, and entertaining the guests while they enjoyed the dinner. Fiorella Cagnolo, who founded Quattro Caffe with her husband Antonio Cagnolo attended with their young daughter and mingled with the guests.

The dinner menu started with Scampi Con Salsa Al Cognac, and the main course was Pollo Picatta and Ravioli Carciofi with Vodka Pink Sauce, and Tiramisu for dessert.

The fashion show featured designs from La Perla who has a boutique in South Coast Plaza and many locations in Europe and other countries. They specialize in luxury nightwear, intimate apparel, swimwear, and prêt a porter.

As this was the first event together as a collaboration, the media were invited to see the cooking show and interview the distinguished guests. Presentations of certificates were made to honor those for their contributions. The guests were given gift bags to take home with Hello Kitty wine, and other items from Quattro Caffé.

  • The Beverly Arts

Updated: Sep 30, 2019

Beverly Hills, California, USA. 20th September, 2019. "Chasing the Dream: The New Chinese in America," is a documentary film by director Harrison Engle and the Chinese American Culture Exchange Association that is scheduled to be released in November 2019. The press conference was held at the Wilshire Screening Room in Beverly Hills and featured formal presentations, ribbon cutting-ceremony, and a screening of the trailer for the film.

The film profiles seven individuals from China who came to the United States as immigrants and built successful lives and careers in business, science, and the arts. Each individual's story is unique, yet they share a commonality with the traditional immigrant story of starting with very little and working hard to achieve the 'American Dream.'

The presenters included Deputy Consul General Dai Shuangming of the Chinese Consulate in Los Angeles, California State Assemblyman Mike Eng, and Georges N. Chamchoum, President of the Asian World Film Festival. The Master of Ceremonies was Joey Zhou with co-host Berrin Aktug.

Among those profiled in the film are: Shao Kuang Ting, a master artist; Mai Sui, a singer and brilliant soprano; Charlie Zhang, a successful entrepreneur and creator of OC Music & Dance; Wei Chen, a businessman and amateur pilot; Yanyu Zhou, a businesswoman; Dr. Yutao He, a space scientist; and Ning Zhou, a fine art photographer and his wife, Lisa Li.

Their inspiring stories tell about their struggles and experiences in adapting to a new culture and way of life, and the dynamism of the growing Chinese community in the United States. The film is focused on the stories of these Chinese immigrants, yet looks to deliver a fresh perspective on how immigrants have contributed to the growth and prosperity of America.

The film is narrated by Emmy-award winning actor/narrator Peter Coyote and directed by Harrison Engle, an Emmy-nominated director and past president of the International Documentary Association. The Executive Producers are Susan Shu Wang and Yanyu Zhou, and the Associate Producer is Joey Zhou. The film is scheduled to premiere at the Asian World Film Festival in Los Angeles in November 2019.

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