Lalan arrived in France in 1948 along with her first husband Zao Wou-Ki and by that time she was already a fully mature artistic figure. Born in China and raised in an intellectual atmosphere, she studied soprano at the National Art College of Hanghzou and the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. Recognized as a composer and a modern dancer she further continued her studies in these fields in Paris. It is only in 1957 that Xie Jing-Lan renamed herself for 'Lalan' and started her painting practice. She will testify a few years later that she then understood that she 'found(s) (her)self unable to live without painting' (Tang, Ling-yi and Pierre Colombel, "The making of Water" Lalan, The Orchid.Taizhong : Hsing Tai.)
Therefore Untitled painted in 1961 represents one of the artist's early works where we can witness her commitment and already accomplished artistic vision. As a dancer, Lalan has learned how to tame her body and let her limbs be guided by her emotions. She followed the training of the leading figure of the modern dance Martha Graham in which the dancer tries to manifest the sub-consciousness through the movement of the body. Added to the deep Chinese calligraphy tradition rooted into the artist's veins, Untitled fully testifies to the subtle balance that Lalan created with this new abstract writing. Some vivid letter-shade forms applied with rhythmic white brushstrokes are emptied from their meaning and vibrate from the painted surface. A soft blue is refinedly overlaid by a subtle melting of gray and white, creating a poetic vortex where the viewer is transported. The intense light that comes out from the composition seems to be a rebirth, like a cloudy sky after a spring storm. In Untitled, Lalan renders a product of her performative artistic practice. Like traditional Chinese artist she used to paint standing with the canvas on the floor. And here we can follow her movements and the windy tourbillon she choreographed in reality and on the canvas.