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Abstract Expressionists We Love: Tu Hongtao

on August 07, 2023

Tu Hongtao
Chengdu, China

I invite you to enter the mesmerizing world of Chinese painter Tu Hongtao, whose art truly transcends boundaries. Born in 1976 in Chengdu, Hongtao studied oil painting at the China Academy of Art, Hangzhou. His abstract works infuse the dynamism of Chinese calligraphy with postwar abstraction, and they take me on a journey through space and time, both real and imagined.

abstract expressionism artist Tu Hongtao

'The Corrupted Garden of Eden' by Tu Hongtao.

In Hongtao's sweeping compositions, I see gestural hints of Cy Twombly and the lyrical quality to his brushstrokes is clearly influenced by the Chinese calligraphy tradition. In this way, I feel the synthesis of tradition and innovation that is a distinguishing characteristic of his work. 

Interestingly, Hongtao's career began with landscapes. His work has grown increasingly abstract and it depicts an energetic and expressive physicality in his process. It seems that Hongtao continues to be referred to as a landscape artist, albeit abstract and contemporary landscapes, but his recent Abstract Expressionist paintings embody some of the best qualities of that movement.

abstract expressionism artist Tu Hongtao

'Melancholic Neuschwanstei' by Tu Hongtao.

Check out more of Hongtao's work:


Pete Stein
Founder, Galerie Stein

Galerie Stein will be presenting several contemporary Abstract Expressionist artists both virtually at and in our gallery in Montreal in 2024.
Contact: Pete Stein at