Kai Chen’s abstract paintings and drawings negotiate ideas of color theory, abstraction and minimalism. Through laborious and meditative hatching marks or stippling, the layering of colors and the modeling of tones with colored pencil or colored ink, Chen’s work complicates the masculine abstract art making and transcends queer emotion and spirituality into a place of complex beauty, contemplation, and consolation.
Chen received his BFA in Oil Painting from Hubei Institute of Fine Arts, Wuhan, China in 2012, and an MFA from San Francisco Art Institute in 2018. He was the recipient of the Headlands Graduate Fellowship Award in 2018, and the Swatch Art Peace Hotel Artist Fellowship in 2019. Chen’s works have been included in exhibitions at Headlands Center for The Arts, Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture, Root Division, Live Worms Gallery, CARe Doug Adams Gallery, San Francisco Art Institute, among others. Chen’s works are in many private collections in New York, San Francisco, Brisbane, Australia and Shanghai, China.