Combining Western and Eastern: Art by Yue Baoyu
Yue Baoyu was born in China and came to Canada in 2001, later receiving a BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. Yue works primarily as a figurative painter, drawing inspiration from classical and renaissance era painting styles, combining Western and Eastern art traditions.
Yue’s portrait paintings exhibit incredible skill as well as in-depth knowledge of both Western and Eastern traditional painting styles. The subjects of the portraits are generally young, likely friends of the artist, and this alone gives the works an updated appearance, distinguishing them from studies as appropriations of a style. Each portrait also utilizes visual symbolism in a manner closely tied to traditional Chinese painting styles. Everything from the background colour to objects in the frame seems imbued with deep meaning.
The artist’s portfolio also includes an archive of older works, allowing the viewer to see studies, still-life work, sketches and other pieces. It’s interesting to have these on view as a reference to Yue’s skillful portraiture.