Private Asian Collection (Sotheby's, Hong Kong, 2005)
Private Asian Collection
In Wu Guanzhong's late years, he once talked about his memory of Japan in the book A Hundred Day's Talk on Art: "The most memorable thing about Tokyo is its nightlife. It was spectacular when I went to a high place to see the night view of Tokyo. No shadows were cast and lights were on all night. It is enviable that one can live in the city with such an impressive night view."1 Completed in 1990, Tokyo at Night could be seen as the artist's memory of the magnificent Tokyo and is also one of the rare night scenery oil paintings Wu has ever created.
In this work, Wu paints like a conductor to shape a cityscape through different overlapping colour blocks and horizontal brushstrokes. With the artist's memory and dreams, the deftly bright coloured blocks and spots shimmer in the dark background. They may be starlight, banner lighting or traffic on a busy street composing the vitality of the city and minutely full of rhythms. Without the dark black background, the movement of the symphony would have not been so perfect. Wu once said: "No matters you are in the East, in the West, in ancient time or in modern time, being proficient in using the colour black in paintings reveal your strong artistic skills. I love black and I am always exploring the possibility of black." In Tokyo at Night, Wu demonstrates his impressive ability to master the use of dark colours.
 Wu Guanzhong & Yan Zi, ed., A Hundred Day's Talk on Art, Oriental Press, Beijing, 2009, p. 148
Please call 1-800-555-5555 to order a print catalog for this sale.