LIU lai-ue, Zoe 李澧榆

Let'em Play



Ink, Charcoal, Pastel, Watercolor on Paper


Let them be Kids 76 x 152 cm | 2018

For this piece, I wanted the lines to be very loose and fade in and out within the shapes in order to create the figure looks like in motion and also follow the rhythm with the ink strokes. I kept the value a little less contrast, also it is to match the ink strokes value. For the right side, the books and papers are subtly flowing in the air, it represents the freedom from the heavy homework and the schedule, exam papers, etc……the works and pressure that brings kids "success". I presented flowing papers in the air to create illusion of space and add on more movement to the piece. They are purposely created with very loose contour lines, so it won’t steal the focus from the main figures and the watermelon ball.    
This image also was mainly picturing about these two kids are trying to reach the hope, the goal, the freedom together in the chaos. I was trying to capture the emotion and engagement while the figures are playing and moving in the same direction together.  

Let’s Break the Hectic 76 x 152 cm | 2018

This piece captured that moment and action of a child kicked the watermelon ball across the playground. It symbolized a breakthrough, an attempted to break through the mist of busyness and his own comfort zone. Busyness/Hectic represented by the Chinese composition paper (原稿紙) and the “comfort zone” represented by the pink area on the ground. The act is brave and bold, also very fulfilling. This piece of work is inspired by a new term in Hong Kong: 戒忙、慢活, translated as "Downshifting" lifestyle.  

Play! Play! Play! 76 x 152 cm | 2018

In Asian countries, most dads work long hours and very hard for the family. But I saw and believed Kids has been really lack of " father's love", the love of deep interaction, which is so important in child development. In this piece, I showed the dad is spending quality play time with his son, dad's gesture is bowing down into kid's level, and i emphasized on big hands and muscular body to show the identity of a father, providing protection and security. This piece approached in a different feeling than last few pieces, I wanted to freeze the moment of togetherness between son and father, instead of spontaneous movement.  
Let’em Play Series, 2017-2018:

This series is focus on bringing awareness to the public (esp. Asian community) of letting children to explore the world through play. Playtime is an integrative role for children’s development before they enter their adulthood. When children play, they solve problems and experience themselves as competent and masterful individuals. Through free play, children are able to discover and invent solutions to challenges. 

In this series, I am questioning how do we keep that fun, childlike freedom well and never let age or high-pressure education style extinguish the fire of our inner child?  

Watermelon ball in this series represents the innocence, uncompetitive, simplicity moment that we all longing for, it is why the ball is always the eye catching focus in the artworks. Children are faceless symbolized the collective society where individualism is not fully encouraged. Figures here are soulless-like in grey tones and transparent looks, it is because of the spirits are suppressed and crushed by the society expectation as well as heavy workloads, but the hidden pastel child-like colors in the background are giving the hope on foreseeing and promising to bloom once these children reach the ball (which metaphor the freedom).




Zoe LIU 李澧榆       


Zoe Liu was born and raised in Hong Kong and currently resides in Honolulu, Hawai‘i. Liu graduated with a BFA from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, with Outstanding Undergraduate Awards in Drawing and Digital Imaging. She currently worked as a teaching artist at Honolulu Museum of Art School. Her works have been showcased in Hawaiʻi, Chicago, Portland and Las Vegas.  She recently took part in a two-person exhibition Let’em Flee (2017) in the Hawaii Pacific University Gallery and also participated in “Art at Large”(2017), Construction Barricade Mural at University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.


Yet grew up in Hong Kong and received higher education in United States, art gives Liu a different perspective and allows her to communicate in a visual manner, without the barriers of language. She primarily employs ink, watercolor, pastel, charcoal and gesso on paper and investigates existential questions, social contradictions, and education issues. In particular issues about silencing and forced-feeding education style.


李澧榆出生香港,現居夏威夷。她畢業於夏威夷大學馬諾阿主校的純藝術系,並獲得繪畫及數位藝術本科傑出學生獎。現擔任檀香山藝術學院的藝術導師。她的作品曾在夏威夷,芝加哥,波特蘭及拉斯維加斯參展。最近於夏威夷太平洋大學舉辦雙人展 “Let’em Flee” (2017),又受邀參與在夏威夷大學舉辦的"Art at Large”(2017) 壁畫創作。


因為中西文化差異的教育背景,藝術讓李澧榆可以用不同的角度、在不受語言限制的情況下,以視覺效果來表達她的想法。 她主要以水墨、水彩、粉彩、炭支及石膏 於紙上創作,從而探討人類存在價值、社會矛盾及教育界存在的問題。尤其對填鴨式教育制度及壓制言論所引起的社會問題特別關注。

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