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Where's the frame

Maribelle Bierens

March 8, 2024 9:54 AM


Evoking the sensation of watching a movie which is building suspense, Changpeng Li’s purple hued paintings depicting silent moments that hook you right in. Whether it’s a shadow of a vase with a flower on a curtain, a view of a airplane wing from the window, the perspective of someone at the backseat looking at windshield, he solidifies a stillness right before something else might happen. 

Changpeng Li in his studio

While he does not depict human figures, a human presence is very palpable. Looking at the paintings, it’s similar to experiencing a point-of-view shot in cinema, where you're deeply immersed in the unfolding narrative, almost as if you're part of the scene yourself. Like a lingering shot before a pivotal scene, this ambiguity adds to the open-ended nature of his work, where the possibilities seem boundless.

Changpeng Li in his studio

‘Just like the silent, empty shots in movies, these moments hold more power than non-stop talking.’ Exploring these absences, Li delves into understanding the significance of cultural symbols and metaphors within fleeting images.. 

‘Images, although seemingly innocuous, can carry an undercurrent of violence towards the viewer,’ he shares ‘manifested through ceaseless visual stimulation and an overwhelming influx of information that compels action.’ He explores the deeper meanings hidden behind the visual surface. 

New body of work in Changpeng's studio

Changpeng explains how the purple tones in his paintings are as a reference to his personal experience of waking up in the middle of the night or before dawn when the world is covered in this shade. Again, this silent moment before the world awakens embodies the open-ended nature that permeates his work, inviting viewers to contemplate the mysteries that lie beyond the surface.

New body of work in Changpeng's studio

You can follow Changpeng Li on Instagram and his website

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