Owing to Hong Kong's cultural and geographical proximity to Guangdong, the Hong Kong Museum of Art has made collecting works and artefacts from this region a priority. In its collection of Chinese painting and calligraphy, the Hong Kong Museum of Art houses a great number of Guangdong works and modern Chinese paintings. In order to show the cream of its Chinese painting collection, the Hong Kong Museum of Art will run an exhibition, "A Hundred Chinese Paintings from the Hong Kong Museum of Art", from tomorrow (March 22) to October 30. Through the finely selected 100 Chinese paintings, dating from the late Ming dynasty to the present, the exhibition aims to present a picture of the evolution of Chinese paintings, from the traditional to the modern, and to demonstrate the significance of the museum's collection.
Guangdong painting has experienced various changes and innovations throughout its history, and this evolution has marked its significance in Chinese painting. Since the first acquisition of a landscape painting by Liang Yuwei of the Qing dynasty in 1966, the museum has established a sizeable art collection of more than 5 800 Chinese paintings and calligraphy works dating from the early Ming dynasty to the 21st century through acquisition and generous donations.
To highlight the development of Chinese painting over its history, the exhibition is structured into five sections, each centred on a specific style developed in a particular period. Visitors to the exhibition will be able to learn about the works, unique styles and techniques of the great masters in Chinese painting, such as Zhang Mu, Su Renshan, Ju Chao, Ju Lian, Gao Jianfu, Gao Qifeng, He Qiyuan, Zhao Shao'ang, Yang Shanshen, Qi Baishi, Xu Beihong, Lin Fengmian, Li Keran, Wu Guanzhong, Shi Hu, Hu Yongkai, Lu Fusheng, Li Yanshan, Huang Bore, Zhang Daqian, Huang Yongyu, Ding Yanyong and Lü Shoukun.
Zhang Mu, Li Jian, Liang Yuwei, Su Liupeng and Su Renshan are the early Guangdong artists whose innovation in creation developed a new dimension for Guangdong landscape painting. In later years, the brothers Ju Chao and Ju Lian became the forerunners of the Lingnan school of paintings with their groundbreaking techniques, which marked a milestone in Chinese painting history. Among others, the "Three Masters of the Lingnan School" - Gao Jianfu, Gao Qifeng and Chen Shuren, as well as their students - were a group of pioneers who adopted Western perspective in traditional Chinese paintings. In addition, a number of Guangdong painters were members of the Chinese Painting Research Society, including Pan He and Yao Lixiu, who advocated the revitalisation of the Chinese painting tradition and reform of Chinese painting, with their views exerting great impact in art circles at the time.
Since the 20th century, particularly after the founding of the People's Republic of China, contemporary Chinese painting has turned over a new leaf. Artists throughout the country such as Qi Baishi, Huang Binhong, Xu Beihong, Pan Tianshou, Lin Fengmian, Li Keran and Lu Yanshao, as well as some contemporary artists like Wu Guanzhong, all sought to break away from traditional styles of painting under the influence of Western ideas. Either adapting Western techniques, or making innovative moves with reference to traditional methods, these artists have all contributed to the diversity of the painting styles of the time.
After the mid-1980s, the "New Literati Paintings" emerged in the tide of "Cultural Revival". A group of young Chinese painters who had experienced the Cultural Revolution including Shi Hu, Hu Yongkai, Nie Ou and Lu Fusheng developed a unique art scene at the time and the influence still echoes today.
With its special historical background, Hong Kong has been a melting pot of Eastern and Western cultures, which placed a tremendous influence on Chinese painting. After the 1950s, Hong Kong became a meeting place for artists from different parts of China. Those who inherited and preserved the traditions of Guangdong such as Li Yanshan, Huang Bore and followers of the Lingnan school of painting including He Qiyuan, Zhao Shao'ang, Yang Shanshen and others, as well as talented artists like Peng Ximing, Zhang Daqian and Huang Yongyu. Meanwhile, artists like Ding Yanyong, Lü Shoukun and Liu Guosong have created their accomplished personal styles with the urbanisation of Hong Kong, and also gave rise to the New Ink Painting Movement.
By attending the exhibition "A Hundred Chinese Paintings from the Hong Kong Museum of Art", visitors will be able to explore the evolution of Chinese painting and trace its history.
The Hong Kong Museum of Art is located at 10 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon. It is open from 10am to 6pm on weekdays and from 10am to 7pm on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays. The museum is closed on Thursdays (except public holidays). Admission is $10 and a half-price concession is available to full-time students, senior citizens and people with disabilities. Admission is free on Wednesdays.
For further information, call 2721 0116 or visit the Hong Kong Museum of Art's website at www.hk.art.museum .
Ends/Thursday, March 21, 2013
The painting "Travellers in the Snowy Mountains" by Su Renshan (1814-ca. 1850).
The painting "Huts on Fire" by Huang Bore (1901-1968).
The painting "Monkeys and Snowy Pine" (1916) by Gao Qifeng.
One of the paintings in the "Scenes of Mount Huang" album (1938) by Huang Binhong.
The painting "Autumn Landscape" by Lin Fengmian (1900-1991).
The painting "Autumn Sunset" (1990) by Lu Fusheng.