Chu finds his own style in 1956 by visiting a posthumous retrospective of Nicolas de Staël. He will push even further than De Staël the limits between the figurative and the abstract while applying to the oil painting a technique of melting the layers that will remind the washes in Tang and Song inks.
In 1958 Chu begins to number his compositions. His first works are varied, testifying to his gradual trend towards full abstraction. He sometimes imitates the calligraphic sign for the magnitude of the gesture and the density of the line. Like the abstract expressionists he attributes to the colors a dramatic role preponderant upon forms.
Chu's immediate success should not make forget that Zao Wou-Ki was already applauded for several years in Paris with similar solutions.
Painted in 1959 the composition No. 39 is an oil on canvas 87 x 116 cm, a large format for this artist at that time. Without any figurative evocation this opus titled Rouge lourd et vert léger shows contrasts of these two colors dominated by a pattern of black scars and spots in the rhythmic style of Franz Kline. The slightly rising composition may echo the optimism of Kandinsky.
Rouge lourd et vert léger was sold for HK $ 40M including Premium by Poly on November 24, 2012 over a lower estimate of HK $ 8M. It is estimated HK $ 50M for sale by Sotheby's in Hong Kong on March 31, lot 1035.
SOLD for HK$ 62M including premium