Charles Choi was born in Shanghai, China and immigrated to Canada in 1995. He learnt painting at the age of 4, with the focus on western master paintings and their creation. In recent years, his focus has been on‘Concrete Expression’- the combination of fundamental painting skills, personal touch and a contemporary approach. He was a multi-award winning artist both in Canada and China including the “Gold Award”of Arts and Letters Club Next 2 art exhibition in 2017,“Best of the Show”in ‘Society of Canadian Artists’Members Annual Art Show in 2013. His work is represented in private and public collections across Canada, Hong Kong, Australia, Japan, Singapore and China.
Choi says it is his intention to truly express his subject‘as it is’together with his own inner feeling. The color he uses is sweet and gentle, with rich and free brushstrokes which represents the moment in which he paints.
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Peace of Mind
In summer 2018, I embarked on a month-long trip to Portugal and Spain. Travelling through those sacred lands, imbued with history and spiritual depth, evoked some personal reflections. As an artist, visiting all the prominent museums these countries have had to offer, was of significant importance to me. In my opinion, no attractions, however well known for their beauty, could rival such deep personal quest. It was once said that “the history of art in fact belongs to the histories of several great artists of the time”. Spain, in particular, has historically been the breeding ground for numerous prominent artists including but not limited to: El Greco, Velazquez, Goya, Picasso, Sorolla, Dali and more recently, Lopez Garcia. As a child, I had long dreamed about my encounters with the body of works of prominent artists as such. Naturally, when I was finally able to fulfill my childhood dream, I found myself rushing frantically to the museums as if it was a game of treasure hunt.
After spending days and nights of browsing voraciously through all the famous museums, my desires were finally satiated. I felt at peace and content. However, I was plagued by a strong sense of curiosity: What extraordinary qualities does Spain embody that she could inspire so many artists to such great heights and brilliance? As I searched for answers, I began to discover and experience her spiritual depth and unique aura everywhere I went…. it was an indescribable quality that could be found even in a row of houses, a group of people, a corner, a staircase, a piece of cloud…. I found myself deeply inspired by what I could best describe (for the lack of a better word) as a force or energy. I could not help but be convinced that this must have been the source of inspiration for a lot of artists. One could perhaps call it the “Power of Nature”. When an artist can imbibe such natural power into one’s creation, there is no question that such creation could move hearts and mesmerize.
Upon returning home, I found that I continued to be consumed and overwhelmed by an overflowing of inspiration. In a blink of an eye, this series of paintings came to life. The process felt organic and joyous, as if I was a witness of its organic and peaceful unfolding. I was overcome by a sense of inner peace and quiet joy when the paintings were completed. Perhaps it was destiny and our interconnectedness that provided me with this opportunity, which I hold with great honour, to share and present my works publicly. Finding a theme to fully capture the essence of this series of paintings was quite challenging to say the least. With some consideration, I decided to name it after the state of mind I was in while creating these pieces. Thus the title: “Peace of Mind”. My only hope is that you will be able to experience the Power of Nature through these paintings and leave with a “Peace of Mind”.