加國畫家深耕台灣19年 繪出寶島日常驚艷國際 | Canadian calls Taiwan home in inspiring painting exhibit

木柵傳統市場|Muza Traditional Market, 2020, 45.5 cm x 38 cm, cm, Acrylic on canvas (Courtesy of James Hugh Gough)

【看CP學英文】對你來說,「家」是哪裡呢?是你從小住到大的老家?你現在的住所?還是只要跟親人、愛人在一起就是家?

Where is “home” for you — that place where you feel you most belong? Is it the house where you grew up? Is it your current home? Is it just being with your loved ones, wherever you are or is it something else entirely? 

如果你去欣賞James Hugh Gough的畫展,你很快地會發現對他而言,家就是「台灣」。此畫展「居之鏡面與花園,台灣」於台北外琨塔Vaikuntha藝術生活中心展出至8月23日,透過一幅幅畫,你能慢慢深入了解這位加拿大藝術家作品背後的靈感來源。

If you visit the latest painting exhibition of James Hugh Gough, the answer to this question might be plain and simple: Taiwan. “Glass and Gardens — Taiwan, My Home,” which runs until Aug. 23 at Vaikuntha Art Gallery, Taipei, for sure gives you an insight into the Canadian artist’s many sources of inspiration here. 

加拿大藝術家 | James Hugh Gough is pictured in this undated photo taken at Vaikuntha Art Gallery. (Courtesy of James Hugh Gough)
還是家好 | Home Sweet Home

在與The China Post的訪問中,James表示「在台灣,我居住過的社區提供我大部分作品的靈感。板橋的巷道、鐵窗和市區與大自然交界的木柵,每次去六甲老婆家那邊都讓我有回到家的感覺。」

“The neighborhoods I’ve lived in during my time in Taiwan provide most of the inspiration for this exhibition,” he told The China Post. “The alleys and grated windows of Banqiao. The way urban sprawl meets a wall of nature in Muza. The comforting feeling of ‘home’ when I visit my wife’s family in Liujia.”

且他的畫作多數描繪從窗內看出去的景致,這些畫面都源自於當年James住在台灣某間公寓時,窗外的街景。他串起這些深埋在記憶中的畫面進行創作,而從畫作中可以看出James對台灣這個「家」的愛表露無遺。

In many cases, the views depicted in his paintings are from the apartments he has resided in while in Taiwan, or streets nearby. They are all connected by the deep affection he has for this special place he calls home. 

板橋家門口前,壓克力顏料|Doorway in historical Banqiao, 2016, 25.5 cm x 17.5 cm, Acrylic on canvas (Courtesy of James Hugh Gough)

「我第一次意識到台灣就是我的家是在從加拿大回來的時候。我很愛加拿大,但我的老婆和我在那邊才待了一個禮拜左右我就開始非常想念這裡的食物。當我們抵達台灣,拿到行李、走出桃園機場、熱風直直吹來的瞬間,我就感受到——我回家了。」

“I knew this was home the first time I returned from a trip back to Canada. I love Canada, but my wife and I were there for about a week when we started really missing the food here,” he continued. “We landed in Taiwan, got our baggage, and the automatic doors opened at Taoyuan airport. The heat hit me, and I breathed a sigh of relief. I was home.”

板橋後巷,針筆畫|Banqiuao Alley, 2017, 22 cm x 27 cm, Ink on paper (Courtesy of James Hugh Gough)
Common Scenes, Variety of media  | 多樣繪畫媒材展現生活日常景象

藝術家對生活日常這類題材有極大熱情,他們從不同的角度觀察切入,利用不同的媒材,像是筆墨、水彩、壓克力,呈現出稀鬆平常的生活瑣事。在他手中,壓克力顏料完美呈現出他腦海中的構圖畫面,這種顏料乾得比油彩快,也讓他能盡情快速疊加顏料揮灑出色彩斑斕的作品。

Common scenes are of great interest to the artist who looks at everyday life from various perspectives using a variety of media: pen and ink, watercolor and acrylics. Acrylic paints seem to fit his disposition.  

They dry faster than oils, which allows him to move to the next layer more quickly. 

福隆陽台,媒材壓克力顏料|Fulong Balcony, 2019, 100 cm x 80 cm, Acrylic on canvas (Courtesy of James Hugh Gough)

完成一幅作品通常會花上他許久的時間,所以對他來說,壓克力比油畫方便,顏料乾得較快,讓他可以馬上疊加另一層顏色。同時,他也覺得只要上色的程序正確,利用壓克力畫作也能有相當好的成果。

It takes him a long time to finish a painting, so this helps get things going a little bit faster than if he used oils. Also, he feels that he can get a similar result, as long as he stacks the layers properly.

James Hugh Gough於新北板橋工作室作畫|James Hugh Gough works in his workshop in Banqiao, New Taipei, in this undated file photo. (Courtesy of James Hugh Gough)

而James的兒童繪本作品則是以水彩色鉛筆來創作,「失誤無法被掩蓋,所以過程可能較為冗長乏味,但是也相對值得,」他續談:「我覺得用水彩色鉛筆會讓兒童繪本更有韻味,壓克力反而比較適合大人。用不同的材料創作也讓我可以盡情創作,發揮創意,而不至於定型僵化。」

For his books, he uses watercolor pencils. “Mistakes cannot be covered up, so it can be a tedious, yet rewarding, affair doing watercolor pencil drawings,” he added. “I feel watercolor pencils provide the right atmosphere for children’s books. Acrylics suit adults. Using a variety of media allows me to be creative; to reject being stifled.” 

Children Literature |兒童文學

James目前正在構思下一本童書。他表示已經完成插畫,也寫好內文了。排版一旦完成了,他希望最早能在今年秋季時出刊。

Gough’s next project is another children’s book. He has finished the drawings and written it already. Currently, the art director is doing the layout and he hopes to release it this fall.  

2018 壓克力顏料 45.5cm X 38cm 靜夜中的六甲老家|Liujia Home at Night, 2018, 45.5 cm x 38 cm, Acrylic on canvas (Courtesy of James Hugh Gough)

「這次和前兩本不太一樣」James說。「我還是用水彩色鉛筆,但這次創作過程沒有那麼複雜了。這個作品也不是有插圖的詩集,反而是個充滿幽默感的冒險故事。裡面會提到氣候變遷問題,因為我認爲這是近期蠻嚴重的一個議題。」

“It’s a little different from his previous two books,” he explained. “I’ve still used watercolor pencils, but gone with a simpler approach. Also, it’s not illustrated poetry. It’s a straightforward story, with humor and adventure. It deals with climate change, which I think is, perhaps, the most important issue of our time.”

當被問起創作過程時,James稱一切都是從一個小點子開始。

Asked about his creative process, he said that it all starts with an idea.  

「只要你有一個點子,後面都沒問題了。當然之後還是要努力的精進自己。像我的書,我幾乎都會從插畫先開始,因為那會花我很多時間。畫完後,我才會開始寫文字內容。通常我己經想了好幾年了,所以靈感也來的特別快。之後我才會補上文字對應的插圖。」

“Get one of those and you’re golden. Then buckle up for years of meticulous work. For my books, I do almost all of the drawings first,” he remarked. “That takes forever. Then, I write the words. Generally, I’ve had years to think about them, so they tend to come a bit more quickly. Then I add any drawings I need to fit the text.” 


How to get there? | “Glass and Gardens — Taiwan, My Home” | 台北市大安區潮州街55巷3-1號1樓(近古亭捷運站5或6號出口步行約10分鐘|1F, No. 3-1, Lane 55, Chaozhou St., Daan District, Taipei | Near MRT Guting Station, exit 5 or 6 (10 min. walk)