Davina Hsu was born in 1981. She was introduced to art and fashion in her native Taipei where she grew up around the family bridal gown business and the high-end art world that her father was involved in. Upon graduation from Fu-Shing High School, a prominent art school in Taiwan, she traveled to New York to study at Parsons, The New School for Design, where she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts. She escaped the strictures and shyness of her childhood, to be reborn as an artist in New York. Her paintings are not about being Chinese, but her culture, mind, sensibilities and preferences are infused by her international background.
When Hsu arrived in New York, She knew two phrases in English: “Hello” and “Thank you”. As Hsu explored New York, she felt liberated. She came into her own as a person and an artist as she honed her craft in her new and vibrant surroundings. She has exhibited in various group shows including virtual as well as bricks and mortar galleries.
Hsu has worked in various design and artist studios since her arrival to New York as well as the fashion industry including New York Fashion Week, 2005. These direct experiences fueled her work because much of it stems from the examination of beauty in all of its forms. Most of her work is about women and there is a strong undercurrent of social commentary in her compositions. In questioning beauty, whether idealized or not, Hsu portrays people who are strangers in order to mirror her own concerns or obsessions including the blurring of gender lines. All of her work is a visual dialectic on the human dilemma; self-analysis and physicality are woven tightly with inspiration.
Hsu lives and paints in New York.
About my artwork
My recipe for creation is 20% beauty,
40% sensuality, and 40% repressed emotion.
I discovered art in my homeland of Taipei. Although my work is not about being Chinese, my culture, mind, sensibilities and preferences are infused into it through my international background. My work examines and presents the dual nature of outer self-confidence and inner vulnerability. It is contemporary in feel but examines ageless questions and ideas.
Though duality and complexity, my paintings are an eclectic mixture of social commentary on modern life and the dichotomies of visions of beauty. There are beautiful creatures quoted in various sensual moments either shown singly or interacting with others. Sometimes the figure is shown in its entirety and sometimes there are just legs, a torso in high relief or a bust of someone strange yet alluring. There are fantastical moments created with glitter and painted impasto. In each, I try to illuminate my subject from under the surface, fresh and juicy, as if the truth can be squeezed from the painting.