This interview was conducted by eChinaArt.com President Gan Yu
and editor Dave Zhou at C. C. Wang's home in New York City on
August 20, 2000.
contains selected questions from the interview with C. C. Wang
along with his daughter Y. K. Wang. The interview was conducted
in Chinese and translated into English.
Mr. Wang, what is your view on the reform in traditional Chinese
In any genre, most artist would 'sing the same old tune' (tune
referring to Chinese opera), the more the old tune played, the
less the people who are willing to hear it. The general public
has a high tolerance for accepting something new. Many artists
in China refuse to release the grasp on tradition that is constraint
them from developing. As for me, I like to 'sing new tune'. I
have to create a style of my own, where I can say "that's
eCA: When you mention Chinese opera, how do you associate
performing arts with Chinese painting?
I believe visual arts and performing art has many similarities.
Western art can describe as drama and Chinese painting as opera.
In Chinese painting, the rhythm is stronger and layering is more
complex. I said layer, by that I meant the visual composition,
space, line and the voice of the brushwork which the rhythm and
motion is expressed.
eCA: How much have the 50's-60's movement of Abstract Expressionism,
the New York School have influenced you?
I never stop searching for new ideas. I detest (to copy) other
idea, as I have said before, 'singing old tune'. I prefer to create
'new tunes'. When I arrived in New York in the 60's, Abstract
Expressionism was the new movement at that time. I am always fascinated
with Abstract Expressionism for its ideas, I have experimented
with these ideas. I was able to find similarity between Chinese
painting and Abstract Expressionism.
eCA: What are your most recent works?
I mainly paint calligraphy and sometime I will paint landscape.
Although at my age, I do not paint at a large quantity and the
size of my painting are smaller.
eCA: Mr. Wang do you paint everyday?
Yes, every morning I wake up to write for several hours. Some
days, I would have some of my old students come to my studio to
paint, and occasionally I will paint with them.
eChinaArt would like to specially thank Y. K. Wang,
Zhou Gen Bao and Lee Hua for their time and contributions to this
interview. All reference materials provided by the Wang family.