Art Critique by Dr. Barbara Aust-Wegemund, Art Historian

by HLS No Comments September 22, 2016

Listen to the Birdsong

Hong Liu-Sertti at Miami Art Expo

Dr. Barbara Aust-Wegemund

PHD from Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel

A spread of paintings in a meditative medley surrounds the Miami Art Expo with works by Hong Liu-Sertti. Inundated with visual metaphors, her artwork appears in a tactile interplay of spaces and forms using a meditative symphony of brush strokes in elegant compositions. The subtle colours and the play of light endow the works with luminosity.
Hong Liu-Sertti captures the movements in her meditative brush strokes that carry us seamlessly into a mystical realm. A lifelong fascination with painting and calligraphy shapes the work of Hong Liu-Sertti, who is selected from the Jury Committee of Miami Art Expo to present her recent series “Transformation” in Miami. Main subject in the series are sea waves in blue green brush stokes and water drops transforming in birds and stamps.
The artist, who is living in Espoo, Finland, is delighted to be selected for the show in Miami, hosted at Nina Torres Fine Art. The 8,000 square feet gallery space across the street of Margaret Pace Park is located at 1800 North Bayshore Drive, in a high-rise building adorned with fountains and with breathtaking views of Biscayne Bay, Miami Beach and the Port of Miami.
So what are the characteristics in Hong Liu-Sertti’s work? ”The key elements of my artworks”, Hong Liu-Sertti explains, ”are birds and calligraphic seals. The seals resonate with the theme of the painting. The simplicity of Finnish art and nature is a great inspiration for my creativity.“ About the process of painting, she continues: “My painting process is a flow of spontaneous creativity. The colors, the brush strokes, the movement and the stillness, the vibration and the silence are all flowing in a natural rhythm. By integrating spontaneous brush strokes with rational arrangement of colourful calligraphic seals, I explore the ways to express conflict and harmony; limitation and freedom.
In this eternal universe, the birds fly their lives and sing their songs of praise for the freedom. Sunny days or stormy days, the birds never stop their love for singing and never stop their love for flying. The motivation behind my painting is to awaken people to reflect on our life and our relation to the universe.”
Hong Liu-Sertti graduated (BFA) at the renowned Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts, China (1996-2000), before she participated at Aalto University of Art and Design (2007) and Sibelius Academy Finland (2006). Her work has been featured worldwide (Guangzhou, Helsinki, Stockholm, Oxford, Paris, Izmir, St. Petersburg among others) and is held in private and public collections in Finland.
Hong Liu-Sertti is a member of the Helsinki International Artists Association (HIAA), China Calligraphy and Painting Artist Association, registered Artists International Network (ART RAIN), the European Union Migrant Artists Network (EU-MAN) and Finnish Art Association.
Her work has been awarded by the State Fine Arts Committee of Arts Promotion Center Finland grant for the solo exhibition “Bird, Forest, Lake”(2013) and byThe Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture grant for HIAA group exhibition “Speak to me – Puhu mulle“ (2012).
Created from an inner silence Hong Liu-Sertti’s work is facing the question how to reconcile the traditional literati mindset of retreat into nature with the public appeal for social intervention of reality emphasized in contemporary art in order to complete a universal transformation. Hong Liu-Sertti prefers to seek out valuable ideas and resources for creative transformation within her own rich cultural traditions in contributing philosophical values and views.
In reviewing her complete oeuvre she has reflected a deep impact of sensibility. By going into the painting, behind and underneath the surface, the painting gains a unique kind of physicality seeking out what lies beyond the surface appearances.
Hong Liu-Sertti’s concept is focused on the importance of mind, body, unity and purity. While viewing these paintings, the mind remains in the now, being fully aware of the illusory nature of material life. What is in and behind the waves? How deep is the ocean? Where is real peace in life? Just listen to the birdsong to make peace with yourself.

( published in ART SLANT Miami Magazine and ARTFIX Daily – Curated Art World News and Exclusives 2015)