The Observer: Interview with Liu Cheng Mui
By Lauren Long
Painter Liu Cheng Mui has spent decades exploring the boundaries between realism and imaginary composition. The Beijing native studied woodblock printing at the Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA), later leaving for the then Soviet Union in 1989 to pursue graduate study at the Moscow State Academy Art Institute and not returning until 1996. A year later, she relocated to Hong Kong, where she has been based since. Liu’s practice centers on an instinctive desire to delve inwards, manifesting in the vibrantly colored figurative oil canvases that she painted after a ten-year hiatus from the medium. On the occasion of Liu’s midcareer retrospective at Hong Kong’s Sun Museum, “Scenic Romance,” Lauren Long met with the artist to discuss her creative journey, the channeling of emotion through art, and the importance of close observation.