Zao Wou-Ki, born in 1921, conjoins western abstraction and Asian calligraphic traditions to produce paintings at once gestural and light-filled. Born in China, he moved to Paris in the 1940s, where the early support of Miró and Picasso, among others, encouraged him to resolve the disparate artistic and cultural paradigms informing his thought. While Paul Klee is readily detectable as a crucial resource, an early friendship with Henri Michaux was also pivotal, encouraging Zao to extend his Chinese ink technique. Michaux's view of his own work as a documentary graph of present-tense consciousness also must have struck Zao as sympathetic, since his paintings, in which wispy calligraphic tendrils float across foggy light, convey a similar sense of the human nervous system transcribed. This book collects, for the first time, writings, interviews and a significant selection of Zao's oeuvre from his early works to the present.