I've been painting for more than half of my life. Prior to that music was my choice of expression. But when I did pick up my first brush I was hooked. I fell in love with watercolors and sold my very first paintings right out of the framer's shop. That encouraged me and pushed me onward. I spent the next 10 years painting and selling at art shows and galleries throughout the northwest United States. In the late 1980's I started Sierra Artist's Association in Reno, NV. In the early 90's I opened up "Two Sisters Gallery" in Reno, NV. It was a working gallery where I had so many wonderful artists and teachers. We taught everything from paper making to advanced oil painting. It was in my gallery that I was introduced to oils. Saying that I’m a self-taught artist seems diluted and an incorrect statement. Not having a degree in art does not reflect the hours I have studied and been taught by the masters, read from great scholars on art history or instructed by more experienced artists on the uses and applications of all the mediums. Nor does it reflect the tuition I have paid for this education. I would say being self-taught for me has meant the same as home teaching my youngest son. Being self-motivated and having the ability to self-educate oneself certainly holds water for those of us who do poorly in a classroom environment. What I do stand on is being authentic. I've always felt that it was cheating to use other artist's techniques. Correct or not I need to be authentic. My work is now in private collections throughout the United States, Europe, Australia and China.
Crossing the borders of realism into abstract fantasy, artist Peggy Guichu renders not only an original work with each new piece, but creates in new dimensions not yet stylized within her other worldly creations combining the spiritual, emotional, and universal languages creating her own visual dialect in the abstract realm unique to all others. The hand of a master and genius combined in one - a rare treat to witness.
Santa Fe ArtWorld
I find your work original, intriguing, complex, and riveting. One aspect that is notable is that your art is frequently beautiful while never, ever descending into merely decorative or pretty. Yours is not work one would buy merely to match the colors in the couch and living room scheme, although people might. It's serious, genuine art, not prettified abstracts.
Bubbles is sheerly (unqualified, utter; also diaphanous) beautiful. The different layers of paint echo the lightness and translucency of bubbles. The composition itself shows a bubble scheme, an effervescence of image as opposed to a highly structured composition. Guichu's use of color also emphasizes the "bubbleness" of the piece with its bursts of tints as if a bubble had exploded into a splotch of delightful color. The playfulness of "Bubbles" corresponds to the theme, as well. The bubbles appear to float on a soft background of mist. The piece brings to mind...no one! While the antecedents are deeply rooted in abstraction, I can't think of any other artist whose work seems similar. Guichu has pulled off a singular, individualized piece of work, as is true of all her pieces.
Video Interview for radio show in China
You can click the link below to hear a portion of my interview while in China in 2010.
I’m drawn to this piece because it’s a curious hybrid of spatial elements within a decorative motif. Your works generally speaking have a wonderful use of expressive color and undulating movement, and this piece is no exception. But the elimination of the horizon line pushes it further from a traditional landscapes orientation, and into purely organic figuration. There’s a robust, assertive arrangement to the roses- nothing delicate or equivocal. The more I look at the piece I’m thinking it possesses a hedonistic attribute- a wealth of luxuriant open blooms, set off in bold complementary hues. The extreme contrast of value is also unusual for the subject. The deep pockets of blue-black and violet set off the red shadows as hot, glowing halos of light. I enjoy several of your more abstract landscapes for their intensified space and color. Unlike landscapes that are reminiscent of a particular time and space, your works are radiant environments unto themselves.
Kristen T. Woodward
Curator of Artists2Artists
“Peggy Guichu is an exceptional painter of the American Southwest. Reminiscent of O'Keefe, her work both describes the natural world while transcending it with magical color combinations. She has a unique ability to infuse an air of great mystery within her partially abstract landscapes.” July 29, 2010
, Artist and Curator, Sparks Art Projects
“I have had the great pleasure of reviewing Peggy Guichu's art for international publication. Ms. Guichu's work is nothing short of extraordinary. Well versed in the great history of art, her work shows professionalism and acute awareness. Meanwhile, she developed a style uniquely her own. A Guichu work may be recognized as intelligent, mesmerizing, colorful, thought-provoking and always beautiful although never merely "decorative." Certainly she would belong to an abstract school of art if any and if such labels are still necessary. Her stunning piece "What We Lost," depicts social awareness as this painting is Peggy's response to the BP oil spill in the fragile Florida coastal ecosystem. Nothing preachy exists in this work and yet I have the experience of viewers unable to stay long viewing "What We Lost" because it is so painfully beautiful. The best way, of course, to describe Peggy's artwork is to choose an example. For this, I invite the reader to happily examine Peggy's 2006 oil painting entitled "Heat" (24" x 36" x 1"). “Heat” is hot! “Heat” takes the viewer deeply into the flames. The composition lacks any framing device: We are not looking at a fire, we are deeply inside it. We don’t know whether this is a friendly fireplace fire, or a terrifying forest fire. We are too enulfed in the flames to be aware of anything defining except the sensation of heat. The colors Guichu chooses accurately represent the range of colors in nature’s flaming heat. White-hot streaks and sections show the hottest heat. Deep black shapes add to the intensity, while the myriad of oranges and yellows represent the actual variety in flaming heat. The shapes defining the abstracted heat also accurately depict fire behavior with licks of flames, upward motion, mounds of fire. One viwer complained about the “breast shapes” in the picture! While the observation reveals far more about the viewer than the painting, there is a valid point to be made. While staring into a fire, as with watching clouds, the mind automatically forms familiar shapes. The comment proves how thoroughly engulfing is “Heat.”” Aug. 1, 2010
, Writer, another mimedia production
“WOW, what not to recommend about Peggy. I went to Peggy for water color lessons, she asked me if I could draw. I said no, she felt I would be disapointed in my water color lesson until I learned how to draw. I was not happy to be turned down but admired the fact she turn down money to make sure when she started to teach me I would be happy. I am still amazed at her depth as an artist, and miss her very much since she has left Reno.” August 3, 2010
Peggy Guichu and Her Art
Peggy Guichu is an American artist (a female artist from the United States). She began her painting career at the age of 30. She is a self-taught artist. She says her creations come from her heart and soul, and the purpose of her work is to allow the subconscious to create. To Peggy Guichu, it is no doubt that emotion has been the important pivot to her creations, and all of her life experiences has become the rich expression in her works. As a female artist, being sensitive and passionate is an infinite extension of her creative power. The fact is that art is already integrated into the depth of Peggy’s life, and becomes her way of living, while recording her personal life experiences.
Peggy Guichu’s paintings contain an abstract and expressionistic look. Her focus on the freedom and frankness of expression, do not formalize the descriptions of a specific theme or plot. Peggy says, “I simply begin and allow the work to unfold. Only when the work is done will it tell me its story. I feel a part of me transferred into the painting; an emotion or moment of knowledge.” However, our artist Peggy Guichu does not concern herself with the so-called inherent borders which define abstract or expressionist art. Rather she follows up with the nature, so that the various old barriers are easily broken.
In many of Peggy’s imaginative works, some specific figures are introduced onto the canvas right under the appearance of abstract or expressionism - mountain views, but in a sea like view, cloud shapes but with the feeling of mist, to evoke the viewers to think, to image. As Peggy says what she expresses are all the images in her life or in her memories. “My memories of this experience were the colors of the land we were flying over. The flowers were made of colors I had never seen before and the air was so crystal clear that I could actually see sparkling prisms all around me.” “I was happier than I had ever been in my entire life and flying so free.” Peggy’s personal imagination becomes the most active factor in her artistic creation and only because of owning the creative ability, Peggy’s art creations can be also of a more expansion of possibilities.
Change is a present world topic. To correspond to this, Peggy’s creations are a conscious effort to show social issues, such as environmental protection.in ‘Is It Too Late?’. This painting reflects the worries from the artist to the fate of the earth's future, with the meaning of criticism and self-examination; ‘An Offering‘, is more positive and progressive in image, good wishes from the artist of happiness and harmony. ‘On The Road To Enlightenment‘, is more like a kind of parable of the image, artist uses the theme of the Himalayas, gradually elevates to the exploration of the world's primitive nature and the praise to the life.
Peggy’s art focuses on colors and variations. She says her creating is like composing music. However, the mission of an artist is to coordinate colors together, to form a color related, powerful "chorus". Peggy always starts with a chorus of colors, “stroke of the brush, and let the images turn in as the composition begins.” And, then through a variety of color combinations, a “colorful world” is composed. In here, the artist is more like a "conductor" of a symphony, as she uses the infinite variation of the colors, to form a controlled image layout, then to enhance the visual richness and appeal.
Peggy’s works are not wordy sermons or specific descriptions. Not much concern about being right or wrong, the works want to express the freedom and independent, as well as personal meditation. In this context, Peggy’s art is with some degree of an oriental nature. In fact, Western modernist art movement is more or less influenced by the impact of Oriental Art, and in the modern era of globalization, post-modern art view does not care who the East is, or who is the West. Although Peggy Guichu’s works were created in the distant West, each of the Eastern viewers may be able to feel and receive the Eastern resonance from her works, as well as finding an inosculated cultural leap.
Perhaps Peggy’s solo exhibition in Beijing is such an opportunity to communicate with, to make acquaintance, to understand each other.
Doctorate in Literature
Associate Professor of the Central Academy of Fine Arts
Vice President of Humanity Institute of Central Academy of Fine Art
Researcher of Chinese and Foreign Fine Art Markets
Founder of Modern and Contemporary Chinese Literature Research Center
Target research interests include art history, cultural heritage protection and development, management and promotion of the fine arts.
Art Director of Art Beijing Fair
Guest speaker of the Boao Forum for Asia 2009
Curator of China National Art Museum in the 53rd Venice Biennale, 2009
In October of 2009, Zhao Li organized Global Collecting Forum in Beijing (originally the forum was in the UK)
Awards From National and International Juried Shows
2011 ArtSlant, Award for Painting "Pink Grapes"
2010 Art Jury Int‘l. Comp., Master Class Plus Artist, “Loving Cranes” in Spring/Summer
2009 FASO, Awarded Outstanding Abstract, “Bubbles” December Competition
2009 Art Jury Int'l. Comp., Merit Award for "Loving Cranes"
2009 Art Jury Int‘l. Comp., Master Class Plus Artist, “Rose Pods” in Spring/Summer
2008 Art Jury Int‘l. Comp, Master Class Plus Artist, “One Step Up From Third” Fall/Winter
2008 Art Jury Int‘l. Comp., Master Class Plus Artist, “Mist in the Horizon” in Spring/Summer
2007 Art Jury Int‘l. Comp., Master Class Plus Artist, “Roses” in Fall/Winter
2007 Art Jury Int‘l. Comp., Master Class Artist, “Unity” in Spring/Summer
2006 Art Jury Int’l. Comp., “Red Mountain” in Fall/Winter
2006 Art Jury Int’l. Comp., “Heat” in Spring/Summer
1998 First Place Abstract Watercolro, "Egret" Splendor of the Sierras, Northstar, CA
1997 First Place Watercolor, "Indian Woman" Nevada
1996 First Place Watercolor, Abundance, Earth Day Celebration, Reno, NV
1995 First Place Abstract Watercolor, "Indian with Skin" Tahoe 11th Ann. Fine Arts, Northstar, CA
1995 Best of Show, Watercolor, "Abstract Tree" Herald Fine Art Gallery, L.A., CA