New Thinking artworks
After the reform and opening up of China that started in 1978 under leader Deng Xiaoping, Chinese art developed in new ways. Artists absorbed techniques from modern Western art while at the same time appreciating and being influenced by traditional Chinese art. They broke free from purely realistic styles and were encouraged to experiment in modernist art practices. The combination of the spiritual expression of traditional Chinese paintings and the expressive and abstract notion of Western art created a dynamic new form of Chinese art during this period.
All works are from the National Art Museum of China.
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Tajik Bride, 1984
Oil on Canvas, 60cm x 50cm.
Jin Shangyi was born in Jiaozuo, Henan province, in 1934. In 1949 he enrolled in the National Art School in Beiping, graduating in 1953 from the Drawing Department of the Central Academy of Fine Arts. After gaining his master's degree, he trained in oil painting with famous Soviet artist Maksimov at the Central Academy of Fine Arts. In 1957, he graduated from the Block Print Department and commenced teaching there. He also taught in the Oil Painting Department.
He has been deputy director of the Oil Painting Department, and vice-president and president of the Central Academy of Fine Arts. He is a member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference Standing Committee, vice-chairman of the China Federation of Literary and Art Circles and honorary chairman of the Chinese Artists Association.
Paintings produced in France and the former Soviet Union during the 19th century had a profound influence on 20th-century Chinese oil painting. With the opening up of China in the 1970s, Chinese artists were able to travel to the West to study art collections and European classical painting. The neoclassical painting style, of which Jin was a pioneer, emerged in China in the 1980s. This work is one of his masterpieces, and clearly shows the influence of European classical techniques.
Auspicious Chinese Mongolia, 1988
Oil on Canvas, 160cm x 140cm.
Wei Ershen, born in 1956, is from Harbin. In 1977, he enrolled in the Oil Painting Department of the Luxun Academy of Fine Arts and, after graduation, became a teacher there. In 1988, he graduated with a master's degree. He is now the president and a professor at the Luxun Academy of Fine Arts, and vice-chairman of the Chinese Artists Association.
Lipstick from Town, 1998
Oil on Canvas, 100cm x 80cm.
Gong Lilong was born in Dalian, Liaoning province, in 1953. In 1982, he graduated from the Oil Painting Department of the Luxun Academy of Fine Arts. He is now vice-director of the Oil Painting Department, a member of the board of directors of both the Chinese Oil Painting Society and the Liaoning Artists Association and vice-chairman of the Liaoning Oil Painting Society.
Oil on Canvas, 175cm x 120cm.
Liu Xiaodong was born in Liaoning province in 1963. In 1988 he graduated from the Oil Painting Department of the Central Academy of Fine Arts. In 1995, he obtained his master's degree from the academy, where he is currently a professor.
Liu is an important figure in the new generation of artists that emerged in Chinese fine arts during the 1990s. His critical representation of Chinese culture separates his work from that of former generations. He uses a simple, honest and direct style to depict everyday life and focuses on issues that relate to the people of his generation.
Girl Leading a Horse, 1999
Oil on Canvas, 60cm x 60cm.
Wang Lan, born in 1953 in Beijing, graduated from the Department of Printmaking at the Luxun Academy of Fine Arts, where she subsequently taught. She now resides in Australia.
Sunshine Island, 1991
Oil on Canvas, 80.3cm x 116.7cm.
Hu Jiancheng was born in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, in 1959. In 1982 he graduated from the Oil Painting Department of Luxun Academy of Fine Arts and, in 1988, he received his master's degree. In 1993, he was transferred to the Oil Painting Department of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, where he is now a professor.