Chung, Chao-Yi is an independent Taiwanese artist who currently lives in Edinburgh. 

Chao-Yi Chung was born in Taiwan, and attended University of Arts London, receiving an M.A. in 2009. Currently proceeding his PhD research in Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh. He is an illustrator, graphic designer, art director and painter. The body of work ranges from collaborative illustration with the publisher Locuspublishing Company to large-scale acrylic painting. In 2010, he was an art director of Penetration Net Media Limited, an online marketing company in Taipei, Taiwan. Chung has held individual exhibitions, “Automatic Drawing" in Taipei in 2011 and 2012, also joined group exhibition named Gaisie Asia Taiwan in 2012 and 2013.  In 2014 and the following year, Chung has taught workshops in a variety of artistic fields, such as sketch, illustration and digital painting.

Chung describes his painting and artistic style as ’Automatic Drawing’, characterised by its spontaneity. He proceeds without any preparation or preconceived composition. In his paintings, he visualises his subconsciousness and life experiences, turning them into twisted lines, graphical fragments and recognisable symbols. All of the artistic fragments in the painting can immediately be linked with counterparts in Chung’s memories or life experiences, in turn finding analogues in the audience’s memories, triggering certain emotions such as joy, sadness, fear and sexual desire. The expression of Chung’s ‘Automatic Drawing’ is aleatoric and random, and the paintings are full of overlapping imagery and fractal shapes, melting and recombining.

‘I draw automatically.’ said Chung.


Chung’s practice of Automatic Drawing is an approach he uses to release the diffuse personal emotions which have been stored in the subconsciousness. The drawing process allows the hand to move ‘randomly and spontaneously’ across the canvas. Chung expresses what emerges from the subconscious to conscious attention by using various materials whether he is familiar with them or not. With practice, a personal technique will develop, and it allows drawing to be done without conscious self-censorship. 


Regarding the application of material, Chung mixes acrylic paints and Chinese calligraphy ink into the paintings, merging the realistic style of oil painting and the sophisticated lines of Chinese ink painting so that contact between Eastern and Western culture can be represented dynamically in Chung’s Automatic drawing.


Chung believes that the ability to draw and use visual language is an innate capacity shared by everyone. Chung has used this ability to deliver messages and to record observations by using his own technique of Automatic Drawing, which, for Chung, is not only a representation of subconsciousness but also a process of self-assembling.