National Art Museum of China, August 16——As a response effort to “The Belt and Road” initiative, the National Art Museum of China (NAMOC) initiated the “Belt and Road • Silk Road Dialogue” Series of Lectures. The afternoon of August 12, 2017 saw the kickoff of the first lecture given by Madame Chang Shana on “Research, Innovation, Development and Application of Dunhuang Art.” In combination of her own legendary art experience, Madame Chang narrated on Dunhuang’s geography, its historical and cultural features, the significant value of Dunhuang Art. She then dedicated to giving a special introduction to innovation and application of Dunhuang’s graphic patterns used in modern design. The lecture was attended by over 200 people from around the country including media journalists.
Madame Chang is a famed art educator and art designer of China, an expert with outstanding contributions to the country. In her maidenhood, she studied in Dunhuang from her father Mr. Chang Shuhong, a well-known painter and scholar, murals of all past dynasties in Dunhuang, laying a good foundation for her future art career. She went to study in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston in 1948 and returned to China in 1950. She worked as teaching assistant in the Arts and Crafts Teaching and Research Group, Department of Construction, Tsinghua University in 1951, privileged to have learned from Madame Lin Huiyin, the noted 20th-century Chinese architect and writer. In 1953, she was transferred to Department of Applied Fine Arts, Central Academy of Fine Art. In 1956, after the Central Academy of Arts & Crafts was established, she worked as lecturer, associate professor and then professor in the Department of Dyeing and Weaving Art. She was Dean of the Central Academy of Arts & Crafts since 1982. She once served as Vice Chair of China Artists Association among other positions. In the beginning of 2017 when Madame Chang was celebrating his 86th birthday, NAMOC held an exhibition named the “Blossom in Dunhuang--Exhibition of Chang Shana’s Artistic Research and Application.” During the exhibition, Madame Chang donated 24 of her works to the country, all of which have become NAMOC’s permanent collection.
During the lecture, Madame Chang introduced the formation and history of Silk Road culture and its current status quo, and interpreted in-depth her works collected by NAMOC and her father’s works. She gave a comprehensive introduction to the intricate beauty of art of the Mo Kao Grotto at Dunhuang in simple, easy-to-understand language from the following five perspectives: natural formation causes of Mo Kao Grotto, its historical and cultural background, tour of the Dunhuang grotto art, Dunhuang decorative pattern and Dunhuang’s Guardian Angels. Her vivid narration on the formation of Mo Kao Grotto, the discovery of Buddhist Sutra Preserving Cave and a few important historical events of foreign invaders’ stealing of Dunhuang’s art treasures brought audiences back to its eventful years.