Chinese Painting & Watercolors From Lian Zhen
From landscapes and architecture to people and animals, artist Lian Zhen has painted it all using a pioneering combination of Chinese painting and Western art techniques.
“A beautiful painting depicts the harmony between nature and imagination,” says Lian Zhen, a Chinese physician who immigrated to the United States and brought his love of sketching and painting with him.
Angelfish in the Coral World
Zhen received a bachelor of arts degree from the University of California at Berkeley in 1992 and a master's degree in architecture from MIT in 1996. What started as a hobby as a kid—drawing and painting—eventually became his career. He now teaches watercolor and Chinese painting around the world.
In 1992 Zhen began to display his watercolors, and they now hang in the MIT Museum, as well as in institutional and private collections worldwide.
Zhen’s artistic journey began when he was just 10 years old. He was born and raised in a farming family in China and walked many miles to school every week. He would stop with friends to draw and sketch along the way.
Growing up, Zhen tried different techniques, including oil, tempera, and watercolor. He taught himself Chinese painting from a book. Most of his watercolor paintings use only three primary colors, and his primary techniques include color pouring and blending.
Zhen says waterfalls were his dream places growing up because Chinese landscape paintings depicted them so beautifully. He would travel by bus for hours to hike to see and paint waterfalls.
In his Chinese paintings, Zhen combines traditional methods with Western painting techniques and theories for a distinctive look.
© 2017 Omega Institute for Holistic Studies