Feng Zikai Comes Home
THE 2ND FENG ZIKAI AWARD ESSAY-WRITING COMPETITION
The lively award ceremony of the 2nd ‘Feng Zikai Award’ Essay-writing Competition, held in Tongxiang, was celebrated on November 8 in commemoration of the 119th anniversary of the birth of Feng Zikai (1898-1975), an influential Chinese painter, pioneering manhua artist and essay author. The jury members included Feng Yiyin, the daughter of the artist, and a host of famous writers and critics including Li Jingze and Jia Pingwa. This year’s competition was co-organized by the Tongxiang People’s Government and Mei Wen (Beautiful Essays) magazine. The organizing committee received more than 5,000 submissions from home and abroad, some of which were from famous writers and scholars in the US, the UK and many other countries. Tongxiang is the hometown of Feng Zikai. Located in Shimenwan, Yuan Yuan Tang is not only the artist’s ancestral residence but also his spiritual homeland. In his early years, Feng Zikai was taught by the master monk Hong Yi. In 1921, he travelled to Japan to further his studies. Feng Zikai wrote extensively on various topics, including literature, painting, music, translation and calligraphy. Among his numerous creations, his most famous works include short essay collections, such as ‘Yuan-Yuan Tang Sui Bi’ and ‘YuanYuan Tang Zai Bi’. Many of his masterpieces, including ‘100 pictures for the sixth episode of Hu Sheng Hua Ji’, were created in his later languishing years. Feng Zikai is a cultural hallmark of Tongxiang. The man’s charismatic artistry plays a significant role in the cultural landscape of Tongxiang. “Feng Zikai lived a life that was as beautiful as his essays,” said famous writer Yu Qiuyu, who was among the 20 winners of this year’s competition.