A grand artistic exhibition is on display for the 60th anniversary of New China
The year of 2009 marks the 60th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China. Sponsored by the Ministry of Culture and the National Art Museum of China (NAMOC), an artistic exhibition entitled in “Reporting to the motherland — the 60 years of the art of New China” is currently on display at all the halls of the museum from August 21 to September 14, 2009. As an important part of cultural events for the 60th anniversary, the exhibition, a debut of artistic achievements in the past six decades, boasts a strong cast and an unprecedented scale.
A large number of officials and artists attended the opening ceremony on August 21 at the museum, including Wang Wenzhang, vice minister of Culture, Feng Yuan, vice chairman of the China Federation of Literary and Art Circles, Liu Dawei, chairman of the Chinese Artists Association, Fan Di’an, director of the NAMOC and Qian Linxiang, secretary of CPC Committee of NAMOC.
Based on the development of the art of New China, the exhibition reflects major characteristics in different periods through a total of 687 artworks from the collection from NAMOC, main domestic museums, galleries and private collectors, including the majority of the artwork created since 1949.
Most of the exhibits are award-winning artworks in previous exhibitions and still boast unique charms. Such combination is likened to an unfolding majestic visual epic poem as well as a grand roll with strong epoch characteristics and abundant artistic contents: the founding ceremony, the devotion to the national construction, the ode to the revolution, the reform and the opening up to the outside world, the diversified ethnic nationalities and the picturesque motherland. The masterpieces of different periods reflect the unprecedented diversity of the theme and the language of the art.
The show also intends to reveal the features of the mainstream culture in terms of the conception and the style as well as the spiritual connotation and the cultural meaning of the time. On the basis of the traditional art essence, the art of New China adopts the experience of the alien art with the dependence on the continuous consciousness of the artistic language and has established a variety of schools and vigor and vitality with rapid progress.
The exhibits especially The Founding Ceremony and a number of major artworks reflect the heroic spirit of New China with a fascinating visual space. The show also provides an academic and historical overview of the history and arouses the passion of inheriting the tradition.
Cai Wu, Minister of Culture, writes in the foreword for the exhibition, “Since 1949, our country has made remarkable achievements in various fields of politics, economics and culture. And in the past six decades, the course of the art has also enjoyed unprecedented development and prosperity. Inspired by the construction and the development of the motherland, the artists have devoted themselves to the society in a bid to reveal the great progress of the time and the revolution of the society in the spirit of advancing with the times and left precious spiritual and cultural fortunes to the country. ”
Director Fan Di’an thinks, “In the principle of getting close to the reality, the life and the people, the artists intend to reveal the lofty ideal and the inspiring morale of building socialism with Chinese characteristics and sing the praise of the emotion of the ordinary laborers. From history to reality, from urban to rural areas, the perspectives of the Chinese art have been focused on various aspects as a record of history and reality. ”
The exhibition is a combination of the public and private collections. The National Art Museum of China has made greatest efforts to call in the supports from different sides especially the National Museum of China and the Military Museum of the Chinese People's Revolution. The masterpieces from the National Museum of China include The founding Ceremony by Dong Xiwen, Chairman Mao at the meeting in December by Jin Shangyi, Five heroes on the Langyan Mountain by Zhan Jianjun. The collections from the Military Museum of the Chinese People's Revolution comprise Capturing the Presidential Palace by Chen Yifei and Wei Jingshan. The artworks from the National Art Museum of China consist of 9:00 on September 9, 1945 A.D. — Nanjing by Chen Jian, The people and Premier Zhou Enlai by Zhou Sichong, In front of the Tiananmen Square by Sun Zixi, Father by Luo Zhongli and Molten steel·sweat by Guang Tingbo. There are also some private collections, such as Standing guard for the motherland by Shen Jiawei, A series of painting about Tibet: going to townⅡ by Chen Danqing. The relief sculptures of the Monument to the People's Heroes are from the National Art Museum of China and the private collection.
A total of 187 traditional Chinese painting basically reflect the process and the development of the Chinese painting on the basis of the tradition in the past 60 years as well as the path of the development of combining the tradition and the creation. As an important part of the Chinese culture, the contemporary Chinese painting features unprecedented diversity. Its mainstream and soul boasts the local cultural spirit and the diversified but unified ethnical spirit. The masterpieces include Red lotus by Qi Baishi (1951), Galloping horse by Xu Beihong (1951), West Lake and Gaoting Mountian by Huang Binhong (1952), Flood, famine, wind and snow by Huang Zhou (1955), A corner of the Lingyan Ravine by Pan Tianshou (1955), Picture of flood prevention in Wuhan by Li Xiongcai (1956), Fighting in Northern Shaanxi province by Shi Lu (1959), Green Great Wall by Guan Shanyue (1974), The people and Premier Zhou Enlai by Zhou Sichong (1979), The monument on the Taihang Mountain by Jia Youfu (1984), Night wind by Liu Dawei (1991) and My country and my people by Huang Yongyu (2003).
The section of the oil painting comprises 121 artworks, most of which are narrative and huge-sized, including Breaking the fetters by Hu Yichuan (1950), The founding ceremony by Dong Xiwen (1953), To Urumqi by Ai Zhongxin (1954), Portrait of Qi Baishi by Wu Zuoren (1954), Five heroes on the Langya Mountain by Zhan Jianjun (1959), Chairman Mao at the meeting in December by Jin Shangyi (1961), In front of the Tiananmen Square by Sun Zixi (1964), No truce forever by Tang Xiaoming (1972), Standing guard for the motherland by Shen Jiawei (1973), Geese in the Taihu Lake by Wu Guanzhong (1974), Capturing the Presidential Palace by Chen Yifei and Wei Jingshan (1977), A series of painting about Tibet: going to townⅡ by Chen Danqing(1980), Father by Luo Zhongli (1980) and In new time- the revelation of Adam and Eve by Meng Luding and Zhang Qun (1985). The path of the nationalization has established a solid foundation for the rapid development of the oil painting in China, which boasts strong vitality and the Chinese characteristics in terms of the artistic connotation and the language.
The part of the engraving consists of 138 artworks. The development of the engraving, which is close to the realistic life, presents a large number of epic poems as one of the most prosperous artistic categories. Since the reform and the opening up to the outside world, a new and diversified situation has been established with more versions and forms and remarkable changes have appeared in such respects as artistic conception, language technique, material medium, pattern style with unprecedented originality and academicism. The exhibition comprises the majority of representative artists since the new-rising movement, including Gu Yuan, Li Hua, Liqun, Yanhan, Wang Qi, Huang Yongyu, Li Shaoyan, Xu Kuang, Wu Fan, Chao Mei, Wu Junfa, Zhao Yannian, Lai Shaoqi and Yang Newei.
The section of the sculpture comprises 79 artworks displayed in different halls. In the perspective of the artistic language, the sculpture boasts the elements from the traditional culture and the influence from those from France and the Soviet Union. In the early time of New China, the relief sculpture of the Monument to the People's Heroes by Liu Kaiqu is regarded the classic in the field. The relief portrait of Mao Zedong, The militiaman and Liu Hulan by Wang Zhaowen and Liberation by Zhang Chongren are also the symbol of the era. Since the reform and the opening up to the outside world, the art of the sculpture has enjoyed rapid development with the progress of the urbanization. The art adopts the concept and the technique of the modern art and boasts more diversified and active images. Since the 21st century, the sculptors not only focus on personal experiences and styles and social and realistic life but also the modern pattern and the language form and the cultural identification and the international position of the Chinese sculpture.
The folk art including the Spring Festival picture, the posters, the comic book and the cartoon comprises a loan of 90 artworks, all of which are the popular categories and classics. Since the establishment of New China, the folk art has enjoyed rapid development to a high level in the history as an indispensable part of the art. The Spring Festival pictures include Signature for safeguarding world peace by Deng Shu (1950), Zhao Guilan at the hero meeting by Lin Gang (1951), Unification of the Chinese nation by Ye Qianyu (1953), Goddess Chang’e runs for the moon by Ren Shuaiying (1955), Green vegetables, big melons and high production by Jin Meisheng (1955), Beside Chairman Mao by Liu Wenxi (1959) and Contemporary hero by the high school affiliated to the Central Academy of Fine Arts (1960). The posters comprise We sincerely love peace by Yanhan (1952), Vast land and strong new seed by Zhang Shaocheng (1973). The comic book s consists of The Romance of West Chamber by Wang Shuhui (1956), The white-haired girl by Hua Shanchuan (1960), Maple by Chen Yiming, Liu Yulian and Li Bin (1978), The Chaoyang trench by He Youzhi (1979), Red ribbon of the Earth by Shen Yaoyi (1992). The cartoons comprise The neighbor by Feng Zikai (1958), Self satire by Liao Bingxiong (1979), The rear door is alwaysl open by Ding Cong (1981), Difficult cases by Hua Junwu (1985). On display are some popular cartoons Havoc in heaven and The tadpole seeks the mother.
A total of 72 exhibits including the gouache, the watercolor and the lacquer provide the flavor from the sea. Combined with the complicated realistic life, the diversified cultural context and the abundant cultural elements, the gouache and the watercolor feature strong Chinese characteristics. And the lacquer boasts unique charm as a foundation of national artistic exhibition.
To better summarize the achievement and the experience of the development, the National Art Museum of China and the Theoretic Committee of the Chinese Artists Association will co-host academic seminars with experts and scholars across the country. Compiled by NAMOC and published by People’s Fine Arts Publishing House, a collection entitled in Reporting to the motherland – the 60 years of the art of New China was issued on August 21 nationwide.
Director Fan Di’an announced on the opening ceremony that the National Art Museum of China will be open to the public for free from August 22 to October 23 for celebrating the 60th anniversary of New China. The audience are allowed in by booking the tickets through telephone( 010－64030586, 010－64031886) and the official website.
The exhibition, an epitome of the artistic achievements in the past six decades, is also a witness of the artistic development, such as the stronger team, the more prosperous course, more fine works and vast space. We feel rather proud of the achievements and the spiritual inspiration to promote the culture as the historical responsibility to keep writing the gorgeous chapter in the 21st century.