Matthaei Botanical Gardens Features Local Artist Chris Huang

Matthaei Botanical Gardens in Ann Arbor will host a new art exhibit created exclusively by artist Chris Huang from May 6-June 25.

Huang currently lives in Ann Arbor but the collection of work on display was created over the span of 10 years, eight of which while he resided in Boulder, Colorado. He has spent the last two years in Ann Arbor, but knows the city from when he was a student at the University of Michigan.

He mainly focuses on using colored pencil or ink on wood, drawing everything by hand. Huang is mostly self-taught, but his interest in art was reignited when he took a drawing class at the University of Michigan.

“[As a student], it was a place that’s really kind of special to me,” he said. “I used to go to the gardens, especially in the wintertime, for the greenery when it was cold and gray out.”

Huang’s pieces feature imagery of animals, people, mandalas, plants and the interconnection of these groups. He describes his work as “a labor of love and an opportunity for the artist to express and connect with higher, cosmic ideals and concepts.” 

“The common thread is that there is a connection that lies between all living things, including plants, animals, and humans,” Huang said. “This cosmic connection is very literal in some of the work as you can see. Sometimes some of the older works depicts these root connections and then coming through the underground, sometimes it’s connected through a heart.”

On May 6, the Botanical Gardens and Huang hosted an opening reception for his pieces, inviting the broader Ann Arbor community to join and experience his work.

“The Ann Arbor community is such a wonderful community  and so is the botanical gardens community as well.” he said. 

Huang has previously exhibited his work in galleries throughout the southwest United States, California, and more. His work with textures often gives the pieces a stained glass appearance, while also exploring themes within nature. 

“The environment that I live in often really informs and kind of affects what I draw,” he said. “A lot of the subject matter is based on where I’m at [geographically].”

According to his artist’s statement, Huang believes that “art should strive to enlighten- to bring one closer to a truth, to the heart of one’s nature. It can and should reach beyond the mass appeal of popular culture’s trends while defying manufactured hype and constant self-indulgence.”

“What I’m trying to what I’m trying to express through the work is just that we’re all connected,” Huang said. “I’ve been working on the same piece all throughout time, and it’s it’s just the subject matter [that] kind of varies from piece to piece, but it’s the same message throughout.”

Visit the free, in-person exhibit at 1800 N. Dixboro Rd., Ann Arbor until June 25 or learn more about Chris Huang at his website

+ posts

Recent Articles