According to the Artist
Chinatown’s history is full of hardship, but also full of love. Doyers Street is located in Chinatown, intersecting with Pell Street at its very end, as if a flying dragon is winding its way up and resting at the intersection of two streets. I was inspired by the immigrant experience and how they perceive this neighborhood as home. Thus, I believe that dragon, both from its visual form and the cultural meaning, can best represent the area. Instead of depicting the form of the dragon on the street, I choose to capture the soul and spirit of this mythical animal, as a visual embodiment of the lasting Chinese cultural heritage.
Tagore said, “Let life be beautiful like summer flowers.” The symbol of flowers implies two meanings in this mural: First, to honor the suffragette Mabel Lee and to praise those who advocate for women’s rights. Second, the flower is a symbol of peace. After witnessing the violent history of Chinatown, Doyers Street becomes its own epic and legend.
The song refers to the style and art making process of my space painting. Different from other graffiti street art, my works often form a close relationship with the space, for I believe that space tells its own story. When I paint, I first immerse myself to the space, waiting for the very moment, and let my paint brush guide me through my improvisational action painting. Through the explosion and abstract lines and vivid colors, I want to bring the oriental charm into my work and compose a song with exuberant and dynamic rhythm.
About the Artist
Chen Dongfan obtained his B.F.A. in Experimental Art from the China Academy of
Art, Hangzhou in 2008. He currently lives and works in New York and Hangzhou.
Chen’s work has continued to exhibit in the U.S.A. and China, and he has been
actively participated in various public art projects and create large scale space
paintings in New York, Hangzhou (China), Turin (Italy) and Athens (Greece). His
recent exhibitions include:
Chen Dongfan: Nevermore, Fou Gallery, New York
Chen Dongfan: Heated Bloom, Inna Art Space, Hangzhou (2017);
Dongfan: Punk Bookstore, Square Peg Gallery, New York (2016);
Child Wants to be a King not an Artist, Inna Art Space, Hangzhou (2016). In April
2017, he presents his first solo exhibition in New York -
Chen Dongfan: You Know
My Name, Not My Story at Fou Gallery.