window  1  152 x 122cm  oil on canvas

FU Hong Window I, oil on canvas, 152 x 122cm. (Photograph courtesy of the artist)

The above painting is one of many being exhibited in the Barn at Montsalvat, in a restrospective for the artist Fu Hong.  Standing in front of it, I was drawn into the oh so subtle use of colour and the impeccable composition. The three dimensional quality of the figure, in a pose that had me imagine she was contemplating a pirouette, was mesmerising.  I later wondered if Fu Hong’s year as artistic designer at the Central Folk and Dance Troupe of China (1974 – 1975) was partly at work here.  In the composition, I recognized the window straight away –  the attic at Montsalvat, my first clue to the home of the artist. Further evidence, a second painting in Fu Hong’s window series, where the window looked very like those in the Great Hall.  Then a portrait of Matcham Skipper clinched the deal. Research confirms that Fu Hong lives in Eltham.

I’ve been posting on Isiiad for just over two years now, but I  still get a little buzz when I discover another accomplished local artist.

His accomplishments are impressive, most notably, finalist in the 2008 Archibald with a portrait of Dr Joseph Brown and in 2009 with a memorable portrait of Dame Elizabeth Murdoch. In 2002 he won the prestigious Shirley Hannan National Portrait Award.

Scroll down to see three more works from the exhibition.

my heart  165 x 155cm  oil on canvas

FU Hong My Heart, oil on canvas, 165 x 155cm.  (Photograph courtesy of the artist)

morning news  152 x 122cm  oil on canvas

FU Hong Morning News, oil on canvas, 152 x 122cm.  (Photograph courtesy of the artist)

The self portrait below, let’s me know something of the intensity of the artist.  His preparedness to push out the boundaries of his work is also evident here. It’s a big bold rivetting work that demands attention.

Fu Hong self portrait 183 x 183cm oil on canvas

FU Hong Self Portrait, oil on canvas, 183 x 183cm  (Photograph courtesy of the artist)

Fu Hong’s retrospective was curated by Naretha Williams,  Arts Manager Montsalvat.

The exhibition closes on October 28th.