North-east artist’s Chinese inspiration

An image of Kate Downie's which will be exhibited at RGU.
An image of Kate Downie's which will be exhibited at RGU.

A North-east artist is returning to Aberdeen to showcase a range of work inspired by her time in China.

Kate Downie, who grew up in Newburgh and graduated from Gray’s School of Art in 1980, will be exhibiting 35 works created over the past three years as part of ‘Shared Vision’ at Robert Gordon University (RGU).

Billed as a Fine Art travelogue, the exhibition will go on display in the Sir Ian Wood Building and the Georgina Scott Sutherland exhibition space tomorrow (Friday) and features recent drawing and painting as well as a series of new experimental prints using Chinese floral plastic tablecloths to represent the mountains north of Beijing.

The unique ‘Shared Vision’ series of Chinese/Scottish ink paintings has been created especially for this exhibition over the summer of 2015. Kate Downie has shared the same surface of existing traditional Chinese ink paintings, creating her own 21st century additions in order to make commentary on the contrast and contradictions of modern China.

Kate, who has visited China a number of times since her first trip in 2010 on a scholarship, said: “I have always been fascinated by Chinese ink painting and also, since childhood, by imagining myself on The Great Wall of China.

“I have made work based on hard walks along remote areas of the Great Wall, in contrast to art inspired by my experiences in the mega city of Beijing and village life in Shanxi Province where I was privileged to participated in artist residencies in 2013.”