World Family in Peace

Hope for Peace
July 28, 2015
After the Sunset
July 28, 2015

World Family in Peace

#89053     127 cm X 150 cm     ac    1989

  • Matisse’s “Dance,” 1909. MOMA, NY

Chen has been inspired several times to use Matisse’s “La Danse” in paintings and prints, beginning with his “Five Races in Harmony.”One night at Collioure, Matisse watched a group of rhythmical Catalan fisherman hoofing a spirited dance. This seed flowered as a series of dance compositions. “La Danse” was commissioned by the Russian collector Serge Schukin, refused to accept the painting for two years. Matisse was en route to dematerialize color by freeing tones from set meanings. His preoccupation was with rhythm. Gaston Diehl says that Matisse “succeeded in infusing the five figures with the same glow of driving energy, by dint of poised and cumbered arms and legs, and in merging them into an overall movement that develops with astonishing dynamism. And yet with all this, there is an increase of grace and natural simplicity.”Having only a black and white illustration of “Le Danse,” Chen was free to make an extraordinary dramatic interpretation that would simultaneously express his admiration for Matisse and demonstrate his own overpowering faith in the coming together of human beings in a united human family. His five differently-hued dancers symbolize the five races. The Red Buddha sits on a multicolored circular pedestal which plays harmonic melody with the circle of dancers and the circle of fire and light behind the Buddha’s head. Chen’s “World Family in Peace” sets forth Chen’s vision of the integration of humankind and East-West resolution.

 

– Lawrance Jeppson