In Studio: Lu Meng

Lu Meng's artistic journey evolved as she balanced her parents' desire for her to study business with her own pursuit of visual expression.

Her work delves into life's essence through vibrant colors and abstract expressionism, blurring the boundary between abstraction and representation. Drawing inspiration from various sources, Lu's creative process is guided by intuition and spontaneity, seamlessly incorporating elements from her dreams, stories, and everyday experiences into her art.

Can you tell us about your journey to becoming a professional artist?

I began learning Chinese Traditional Painting and basic fine art techniques at the age of 4. However, I pursued business studies at university as per my parents' wishes. Despite this, my passion for visual art persisted, leading me to later study filmmaking at the Beijing Film Academy. Here, I acquired knowledge of composition, color theory, perspective, and montage language. Subsequently, I embarked on a career as a documentary director at China Central Television.

It was in my middle age that I rediscovered my love for visual art, ultimately choosing it as my later-in-life career path. Today, I stand as an independent artist and serve as an academic advisor in Art Healing at an international art education organization.

Tell us about your work.

My artwork delves into the profound meaning of life. Within the natural world, every life form influences and supports one another. Through my art, I strive to convey the purity and truth inherent in life itself.

After exploring the boundary between abstraction and representation, I came to realize that there exists no clear demarcation between the two. Abstract and representational elements, like the visible and the invisible, mirror the natural laws of entropy, life, and death. I depict abstract energy and figurative life using a rich palette of vivid colors. By employing abstract expressionism, I construct fantastical worlds that express the essence of life.

While acrylic on canvas serves as my primary medium, I also experiment with digital art, mixed media such as watercolor and digital collage. Recently, I've even dabbled in AI-generated art, albeit sparingly. 

My aim is to draw attention to the wilderness, to the animals and plants that exist beyond the confines of our daily lives, beyond the realms of AI, META, and mobile phones. There lies a real, beautiful yet vulnerable world, from which humanity has drawn inspiration and wisdom. Through my paintings, I ponder how our relationship with the planet is evolving in the age of AI.



Tell us about your process.

My process typically begins with fragmented thoughts or a simple concept, which I then sketch in my notebook to glean inspiration. However, the final outcome often differs from the initial concept.

Unlike my mixed media work, where I may create a watercolor piece and then digitally collage it, I prefer to paint directly onto the canvas without preliminary sketches. Both acrylic painting and digital collage share an abstract nature, making the process akin to discovering a picture rather than consciously painting it. The beauty lies in the adventure of creation, where the outcome often diverges from the original plan.

When you are looking for inspiration, what resources do you turn to?

Inspiration strikes me at any moment and from any source. It could be from a story, a documentary (with "Planet Earth" being a personal favorite), or even a fleeting image encountered during my daily travels. Dreams also serve as a wellspring of inspiration, with midnight sketches often capturing the illusions that visit me at night. Music, too, holds sway over my creative process; I once created a piece inspired by a Chinese rock song. 

Ultimately, inspiration knows no bounds—it could manifest as a sentence, a feeling, or a cherished childhood memory. My mind acts as a radar, ceaselessly scanning for inspiration in the world around me.


Finding the right rhythm to be productive can be a challenge, what advice do you have for staying productive and focused?

Maintaining physical fitness and adhering to a structured plan can bolster productivity. It's crucial to listen to your body and take breaks when fatigue sets in, without pushing yourself too hard. If necessary, disconnecting from distractions such as mobile phones can aid focus.

Ultimately, finding your rhythm hinges on a genuine love for what you do.

What is your advice for combating creative block?

Creative blocks are an inevitable part of the creative process. Instead of viewing them as obstacles, embrace them as opportunities for growth. Take breaks when needed and allow yourself to rest.

Sometimes, a shift in perspective or exploring new avenues can reignite your creativity. Don't despair or rush the process; instead, remain patient and continue exploring. Engage in activities that stimulate your mind and invigorate your

As an artist, how do you measure your success? Can you recall a specific event or milestone(s) in your career that made you feel successful?

Success, to me, lies in being collected by unknown collectors—an affirmation of my art's resonance with others. Other milestones, such as being featured in professional publications or participating in exhibitions, also mark significant moments in my career.

How do you see the art market changing? Where do you see yourself in this transition? 

The art market has undergone numerous transformations throughout history, yet the artist's core mission remains unchanged: to express their ideas about the world through art. As such, my focus remains on creating art regardless of market shifts.

What advice do you have for artists beginning to build their careers?

Consistent practice, experimentation, and daily reflection are paramount for budding artists. Exposure to a wide array of artists' works, including contemporaries, is essential for growth while maintaining artistic independence.

Embrace opportunities to showcase your work and solicit feedback, even if it means facing rejection. Authenticity is key; resist the temptation to cater solely to market

Do you consider yourself, and all artists, to be entrepreneurs? Why or why not?

While some artists may embody entrepreneurial traits, I personally do not align myself with this classification. Entrepreneurial artists excel in self-promotion and studio management, whereas my focus remains primarily on artistic creation. Artists should possess a business mindset but need not undertake the responsibilities of entrepreneurship. Collaboration with entrepreneurs is crucial for navigating the art market effectively.

Failure is an inevitable part of success in any field. Do you have advice for overcoming setbacks?

Accept failure as an integral part of the journey toward success. Setbacks present opportunities for growth and self-discovery. Engage in activities outside of art to rejuvenate your spirit, and continue creating despite challenges. Remember, setbacks are not indicative of technical deficiencies but rather opportunities to refine your artistic vision.

What sparked your interest in partnering with TurningArt? How does your experience with TurningArt differ from other art companies you've worked with?

The allure of TurningArt lies in its unique focus on providing exhibition spaces in commercial and public settings. This sets it apart from other platforms catering primarily to galleries or private collectors.

What does having your artwork in the workplace and other commercial or public spaces mean to you?

Exhibiting my artwork in workplaces and public spaces extends the reach of my art to a broader audience. It not only enhances visibility but also opens doors.


To see more featured TurningArtists, return to our blog. To get Lu Meng's art in your space, set up a free consultation with an Art Advisor here! 

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