La Jolla artist Grace Chow opens exhibition in Poway

A new art exhibit featuring the art of La Jolla resident Grace Chow, as well as some of the artwork of her in-laws, Chow Chian Chiu and Chow Leung Chen Ying, is on display through Feb. 23 at the Poway Center for the Performing Arts (PCPA), 15498 Espola Road, Poway.

There will be an artist’s reception for the show from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14, where Chow will give a talk and painting demonstration (at 11 a.m.).

The exhibit will feature about 10 to 12 traditional Chinese brush paintings of the late Chow Chian Chiu and his wife, Chow Leung Chen Ying, and about 40 of Grace Chow’s paintings, which include mixed media, oil, acrylic and Chinese brush painting. Chow Chian Chiu died in 2006, and his wife in 2005.

Grace Chow said she’s been exhibiting her late in-laws’ artwork alongside her own for about 10 years. Her in-laws’ art will be on display in the main lobby, while her art will be on the wall facing the lobby and upstairs.

Every show she does has a different theme, often based on her world travels. This show, her fifth at the PCPA, is based on her travels in Alaska, Canada’s Northwest Territories, Turkey, Israel, China, and Fiji, as well as some inspired by San Diego.

“The whole show has many different varieties (of artwork),” said Chow. “When you go see it, you’ll be very surprised, because some of it seems like it is aimed for children, and some for adults, because I use different mediums and different thought processes.”

Chow was born in China and grew up in Hong Kong. When she was 12, her father sent her to take brush painting lessons from Chow Chian Chiu and his wife, who would late become her in-laws. “I studied traditional Chinese brush painting with them for seven years,” Chow said.

She came to the United States to attend college, earning a B.A. in Sociology from the State University of New York at Binghamton.

After earning her degree, she decided to go back to the fine arts and earned B.F.A. and M.F.A. degrees in painting from the University of Washington, with the goal of teaching.

In 1984, her husband got a job as a professor at San Diego State University and they moved to San Diego, where Chow taught Chinese brush painting classes for the San Diego Museum of Art and the San Diego Community College District, as well as courses in mixed media for the UC San Diego Extension Program and the Athenaeum School of the Arts.

Chow said she has cut back on her teaching and presentations lately to prepare the art for this show. “I’m so glad it’s done,” she said. “I feel good about (my paintings).”

All of Chow’s artwork, as well as the artwork of her in-laws, will be available for sale. Proceeds will be donated to several charities.

IF YOU GO: The gallery at Poway Center for the Performing Arts is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, and 10 a.m. to

3 p.m. Saturday. It is closed Sunday and Monday. Admission is free and free parking passes can be obtained from the office. (858) 748-0505.