University of Iowa News Release
Aug. 5, 2005
Image: Hu Hung-shu, Leap, 2003, Oil on canvas, © Hu Hung-shu
UI Museum Of Art Shows Design Work By Professor Emeritus Hu Aug. 20 - Oct. 23
"Hu Hung-shu: My Heart and My Blood," a diverse exhibition of more than 60 artworks giving an overview of the design work by the University of Iowa professor emeritus, will be shown Aug. 20-Oct. 23 in the Carver Gallery of the UI Museum of Art (UIMA).
An opening reception will be held for the exhibition 6-8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 20.
The exhibition features more than 20 black-and-white oil paintings, sculptures made of various materials, models of larger sculptures he has installed in public sites, photographs and models of other public works that have been installed in different locations around the country and in Taiwan, and everyday objects including chairs and tables.
A native of Shanghai, Hu studied architecture at Cheng-kung University in Taiwan and design at the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. He was head of the design area of the UI School of Art and Art History from 1968 until 2002. He retired from the UI in 2003.
Hu's black and white oil paintings have been exhibited in the United States, Paris, Seoul and Taiwan. A Los Angeles Times review from 1997 stated: "The surprise is that Hu seems at first to replace lofty philosophical detachment with the subjective passion of European Romanticism. The most modern artist he connects to is the German surrealist Max Ernst with his eroding, changing surfaces. More often, however, Hu brings to mind a 19th-century Symbolist like Rudolphe Bresdin. In the end, these seemingly contradictory qualities meld into the tendency of both traditions to treat landscape like a living thing, bursting with latent energy."
Hu's furniture designs have been described by Architectural Review in London and MD magazine in Germany, which labeled them "ultramodern products." His lamps have received awards in international competitions, and he has received 17 public art commissions in Iowa, Florida, Utah, Washington and Taiwan.
After his retirement Hu traveled to Taiwan and China as guest professor. He has recently completed a book on basic design, which will be published in both English and Chinese.
The UI Museum of Art, located on North Riverside Drive in Iowa City, is open noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday, and noon to 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday. Admission is free. Public metered parking is available in UI parking lots west and north of the museum.
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