Spirit with a con­tem­po­rary ap­proach


10thNa­tion­alEx­hi­bi­tionofChi­ne­seGong­biArt. artists na­tion­wide have pro­duced in the past three years oc­cupy nine ex­hi­bi­tion halls at the Na­tional Art Mu­seum. The show opened on Fri­day after­noon.

Niu Kecheng, vice-chair­man of the Bei­jing-based Chi­nese Gongbi Art So­ci­ety, the ex­hi­bi­tion’s or­ga­nizer, says the show fo­cuses on the vari­a­tions of gongbi art, not in the realm of tra­di­tional tech­niques but in the con­text of con­tem­po­rary life and tastes. It hails the value of crafts­man­ship that needs to be de­vel­oped by peo­ple to­day.

“The artists (at the show) fa­cil­i­tate as many work­ing ap­proaches as pos­si­ble to en­rich the con­cep­tual fea­tures of gongbi, such as col­lage and rub­bing. And they do not limit their cre­ativ­ity to paper and silk but also in­cor­po­rate other ma­te­ri­als,” he says.

Hang Chunx­iao, one of the ex­hi­bi­tion’s cu­ra­tors, says the ex­hi­bi­tion does not in­vite view­ers to judge whether a paint­ing is good or valu­able.

“We need to fo­cus on the sto­ries be­hind the works, what the artists were think­ing about when they were work­ing and how they at­tempted to chal­lenge our aes­thetic stereo­types to un­der­stand cul­tural tra­di­tions,” he says.

The ex­hi­bi­tion fea­tures two projects to give view­ers a his­tor­i­cal con­text of a fa­mous paint­ing. Dur­ing the ex­hi­bi­tion, which runs through Jan 3, stu­dents from the Cen­tral Acad­emy of Fine Arts will re­pro­duce and com­plete a copy of a mag­nif­i­cent fresco at the Yon­gle Tem­ple in Shanxi prov­ince, which is rec­og­nized as a bril­liant ex­am­ple of fig­ure paint­ing in the gongbi style.

With the as­sis­tance of vir­tual-re­al­ity tech­nol­ogy, peo­ple can “en­ter” Qianli Jiang­shan Tu (A thou­sand li of rivers and moun­tains), a blue-and-green moun­tainand-water scroll by Song master Wang Xi­meng that ranks among the top 10 classical Chi­nese paint­ings.

Right: Jiang Ji’an’s paint­ings and in­stalla-

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