Charles Choi

Home: Whitby, ON
Title: Afternoon Tea
Media: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 120 x 90 cm

Artist Statement

I was strongly inspired by the Courbet’s principal with his motto: “painter must only paint what is before his eyes”. The studio that I’ve enrolled in is called “Concrete Expression”, Concrete means painting by “what was seen”, or as Lucian Freud said “I could never put anything into a picture that wasn’t actually there in front of me, that would be a pointless lie.” Expression is to clarify reactions, feelings, thoughts, beliefs & connections with audience.

So what I learned over there was when facing the object, my main duty is to express precisely according to “what I see”, try to see the nature as it is, together with my understandings and experiences, I will focus on “how to paint” than “what to paint”, so it’s what to see and how to see the object in the first place.


I was born in Shanghai, China and immigrated to Canada in 1995. I learnt painting at the age of 4, with the focus on western master paintings and their creation. In recent years, my focus has been on ‘Concrete Expression’ – the combination of fundamental painting skills, personal touch and a contemporary approach. This portrait is my girlfriend “Ginson”, having an afternoon tea at a sunny afternoon. My intention is to truly express her ‘as it is’ together with my own inner feeling. The colors were simple and gentle, with rich and free brushstrokes, which represent the moment in which I painted.

Facing the object, it’s my intention to truly express it ‘as it is’ together with my own inner feeling. My colors are sweeter and less violent, with richer & freer brushstrokes, which represent the moment while I paint.

Awards and Memberships
2018 Painting “Late Snow” won the “1st Place Award” in Whitby Ribfest Art Show
2017 Painting ”Hope” won the “Award of Excellence” in PRAC Juried Art Show
Painting ”Afternoon Tea” won the “Gold Award” in Arts and Letters Club Toronto’s Next2 Art Exhibition
2016 Painting “Beauty in a Mess” won the “Enbridge Award” in PineRidge Juried Arts Show
Painting “Expecting Someone” won the “Gold Award” Oshawa Juried exh.
2015 Painting “Oct.01” Fourth Youth National Art Exhibition, Shenzhen, China
2014 Painting “Victory” being selected in The Twelfth National Art Exhibition, China
Painting “Unity in a Mess” won “Best Painting” in Uxbridge Annual
2012 Painting “Closed Friend” won ‘The Best Painting of the Show’ in Latcham Gallery”s Annual Juried Exhibition 2012
Being an Elected Member of Society of Canadian Artists (SCA)

2001 ~ 2003 M.B.A. University of South Australia
1988 ~ 1992 B.A. Hong Kong Shue Yan University
2008 ~ 2009 China Academy of Arts 2nd Studio, Oil Painting Department
1981 ~ 1981 Shanghai Oil Painting and Sculpture Institute Oil Painting Course
Solo Exhibitions
2017 Robert McLaughlin Gallery Solo Exhibition – “Transformation”
2018 OceanArt Gallery Solo Exhibition – “Peace of Mind”
2019 The Barn Hong Kong Solo Exhibition – “Colorful Life”