November 16, 1983 – February 18, 1984
“CONTEMPORARY CHINESE PAINTING: An Exhibition from the People’s Republic of China” presents sixty-six paintings and sketches in the traditional style by China’s famous, veteran artists as well as younger, emerging artists. The works-comprised of hanging scrolls, album leaves, fan paintings, horizontal scrolls, and a long handscroll-are mostly painted in the last decade, 1970s to 1980s. A wide spectrum of styles and themes is represented, demonstrating the versatile Chinese ink-and-brush method. Most of them have never been published or exhibited abroad.
Organized by the Chinese Culture Center of San Francisco in cooperation with the Chinese Artists’ Association of the People’s Republic of China, the exhibition is designed to record the revival of traditional painting in China today the artistic links with the past as well as the new directions and innovations that have occurred so rapidly in the past few years after the Cultural Revolution and the fall of the Gang of Four in 1976. Thirty-six artists are represented, all of them living except Li Kuchan, who died recently after the exhibition was assembled. The oldest painter represented is Zhu Qizhan, aged ninety-one, and the youngest is Shao Fei, twenty-nine years old.
A timely event, the exhibition covers a new and as yet unexplored area of Chinese art that has increasingly engaged the serious attention of scholars, collectors. and lovers of Chinese painting. The paintings were personally selected from all over China by the American art historians involved with the project: Lucy Lim, executive director/ curator of the Chinese Culture Center, Prof. James Cahill of the University of California at Berkeley and Prof. Michael Sullivan of Stanford University-both advisors to the project and contributors to the catalogue, fully illustrated with eighty-nine plates in color.
Major funding support for organizing the exhibition is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, a Federal agency, California Arts Council, San Francisco Hotel Tax Fund, Starr Foundation, George Frederick Jewett Foundation, Hearst Foundation, Columbia Foundation, Foremost-McKesson Foundation, BankAmerica Foundation, Charles Ulrick and Josephine Bay Foundation, Mary Livingston Griggs and Mary Griggs Burke Foundation, Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company Foundation, and others.