Heart Sounds from A Loner

  To discuss the arts of female painters, we should remain an objective observation and expression, which is quite difficult. For so long our society and the art system has been formed some fairly stable view to the arts for women, these views have affected our observations and judgments on women artists. In order to subvert these traditional male-centered unconsciousness, the U.S. well-known feminist art-historian Linda?Nochlin trying to establish a kind of nature of womens creativity in the visual expression pattern, while destroying the hypostasis advocated the reductive, the eternal female style, which often works fine in central images of works or the meticulous use of color, etc., as the basis for its claims. Thus, in a social specific historical period of gender differences, women artists may be directed to certain specific direction.  For Li Rongzhi, to talk about the feminist art-historical perspective seems to be too extravagant. She is not a woman painter who starts with theory and history first, and then enters the painting. Painting for her is a completely heartfelt love. She has a harmonious and happy family and she has sufficient time and fortunate opportunity to be able to get the appropriate advice from those famous teachers of Mural Department of the Central Academy of Fine Arts. From classical Tempera technique to contemporary art lecture, her advanced studies at the Central Academy of Fine Arts, opened her eyesight and improved her visual taste. Importantly, as to tireless in the hundreds of pieces of work creation, she access to the happiness that the others are hard to replace, which is a life of self-realization, a sense of substantial and confident.  However, when I saw the works of Li Rongzhi still slightly surprised. It seems that she did not have much impact of suffering college art education system. On the contrary, her art has distinct naive painter features, such as spontaneity, aboriginality and simplicity. For many talented college artists, these artistic qualities is very difficult to achieve, while Li Rongzhi, it seems that is not difficult, she naturally would have these qualities. I am reminded of an encounter, in a dinner, there is a Ms. drink a large glass of white wine just like drinking water, neighbors told me that she did not feel alcohol and has a natural immunity.  Take a look at Li Rongzhis portraits, I would think of Chinese painting in the early 20th century. Predecessors went to overseas countries, to seriously learn the art of Western oil painting. But after they got home, they put the plane of traditional Chinese painting into the screen, began the process of Chinese-Western oil painting. Like Li Yishis painting Palace Girl, has a very strong temperament of Chinese art, as well as Yan Wenliangs Kitchen, is full of smelling of straw in Suzhou countryside. And Li Rongzhis painting, it has such simplicity. You can try to find some of local style less accurateness, but the smell of simplicity is everywhere. Li Rongzhis works do not pursue high light and strong three-dimensional feeling, though oil painting they are, theres matt gouache feel, this thanks to her study of classical Tempera murals.  Li Rongzhis portrait compositions are quite simple, there are not many descriptions of the environment and details, her painting Home Woman and a Small White Dog is not only the pure color and composition, but also the simple characters. The Lute Girl has been elongated shape is very holistic, intended Lin Fengmians painting style, while shapes have the meaning of Modigliani in painting some peoples eyes. Perhaps because of my education in art history, in her paintings of these simple, I always can see some of the flavor of past masters. For example, The Female Body Lying Down is a more primitive nature of the high, highlighting the line factors in the overall gray tone to maintain the subtle changes of color is not just flat painted. The Four Naked on the Lawn of The River like Paul Cezannes Bathing Woman, composition means that exudes the free creative ideas.  Characters in Li Rongzhis pen, both portraits and whole body paintings are positive facade of the image, indomitable, stretch the full frame. This positive center of the composition, with the simple plane of the 20th century modernist art, such as the early 20th century oil painter, Wang Yuezhi depicts three Taiwanese women in the Descendants of Taiwan, even though it is a picture of a plane but sublime. Intentionally or unintentionally, Li Rongzhi makes these characters become the Bible-style and classic portrait of a typical style, to collect them from the contemporary contexts of social life out, moved into an art space transcend the historical time and space. Can also say that Li Rongzhis mural painting benefits from the overall feeling, and closer to the plane of the Egyptian wall paintings.  In the description of the many flowers and still life works, Li Rongzhi gets rid of the portrait to her shape constraints. As the display of the still life and all kinds of flowers have a longer period of time to observe, the works seems more relaxed, more calm on the colors and more free expression to her experience of life. Li Rongzhi described two types of flowers. The first category is Peach Blossom and the Orioles, this kind of work is very easy to engender a doubt, is this China painting painted with oil painting materials? Line elements and peace painted color blend so harmonious. Li Rongzhi flowers and still life compositions are also mostly the main center, flat-degree viewing angle. In the painting theres Lily Green Apple, the artist shows a keen sense of the contour line, online analytical regions and the subtle control of color. Red Carpet Girl reflects the artists sense of active composition, such as Matisses paintings, have a strong taste of the plane.  Another type of flowers and still life played down the line factor, paint on the paper, directly expressed the color impression of the immediate thing. Such as works like A Cockscomb of Chicken, with freedom of expression implications, and full of zest for life. Wild Lily, line relaxed and coherent, she expressed the ordinary still life with a limited color. Not to pursue too many colors, so that Li Rongzhi avoids mixed color control. In the display still life, she never intentionally put density and white, high and low scattered so-called beauty of the composition, it seems that any angle, any method that placed a painting. Blue and White Porcelain Pot, jars of different sizes laid out evenly on the desktop, very different from college common still-life display way, she focuses on the performance of the glass and white porcelain vessels, experience the subtle color changes which is difficult to draw.  Li Rongzhis landscapes painting a very loose comparison and a little clumsy, you can not see the common mode of landscape composition. It not only shows the extraordinary scenery of Beijing suburbs, the Great Wall and villages under the sunset, but also the landscape in Anhui, farmers in the fields. Framing naturally, composition stable, depicting pairs of eyes have seen the overall impression of landscape. Li Rongzhi is not so much to consider conditions for the expression of color in the landscape, but rather the expression of the inherent color, and rarely express delicately the complexity level outside the light. She depicts paradise is where the ideal scenery, there is a general simplicity of childrens paintings, and some scenery with the flavor of Chinese ink painting.  In general, Li Rongzhis painting is not universal, but coming from individuals within a particular aesthetic tastes and the pursuit of a special type. Li Rongzhis painting, gives us the type of the aesthetic feelings different from college painting, but also provides us with space for reflection. An important problem is, how to treat those differences between not well-trained simple painter and highly skilled college painter? From the perspective of visual culture, Li Rongzhi art, reflects the contradiction between a spontaneous observation ,description of human ways and College observation , describe way, restored a direct observation of the eye can see and the expression of Naive nature. These qualities and potential, are they sleeping in many peoples hearts and how we will go to wake it? What kind of value and effect it is in the development of contemporary art?

  -- The Ramble of Mr. Jin Yides Art Education and Creation

  (风度翩翩State of Qatar三十年记念

  (I) A Memory of Thirty Years


  It was in the late summer and early autumn of 1979 when the cicada singing was not faded away at the lake bank, with the very strong summer heat, the campus was poppled with some exciting passion and accompanied with the curiosity of a new term. A teacher came to the door of our new classroom, and then he started his lecture with smiles. His sound of voice was not high, and in a very strong Shaoxing accent, he made a lecture from impressionism to postimpressionism and from the nature of line drawing to the representation of lines. For the youth of the whole class who came out from the disaster and chaos of the Cultural Revolution and who were filled with the enthusiasm for study and the loose sentiment left from the Cultural Revolution non-government revolution, such contents were particularly fresh. The teacher was right Mr. Jin Yide. Thirty years have been passed since that scene, but it is still engraved in my heart. When we wash off the academic experience from memories and from which we determine our thought and the lineage source, we can find this scene is overlaid in the deep spiritual resource.


  Mr. Jin Yide is an old professor of the Oil Painting Department China Academy of Fine Arts. What has intensively revealed on him is the quality that shows respect to artistic language rhetoric and the thinking on theories and that has been a significant lineage of the tradition of China Academy of Fine Arts. The said scene is not an unforgettable retrospect of the past only; as for the memory, furthermore, its significance lies in the spirit of some academy in the narration and the inquiry on the visible and invisible background and venation of some techniques. The inquiry of such spirit is of long standing, is originated from the surgent cultural passion to Rescue the national character by art from Mr. Lin Fengmian generation and originated from the dignified professional dedication that one and another generations of ancestors treated fine arts as an exclusive academy to have long-term research since then.


  In early 1960s, Mr. Jin studied at the Romanian Expert Borba Research Class sponsored by Ministry of Culture then, and later he acted as an assistant teacher of Mr. Ni Yide. Under the background of the united Soviet partys realism painting nationwide, the styles of Borba and Ni Yide had the trend of expressionism which kept producing deep impacts on Mr. Jin Yide. Esp. their expression approach highlighted by lines has passes through the viewing manner of the gloom method, dismantled the sculpt habit of photo taking type and directly targets at the analysis on the nature of things and the possibility of shape hammering. All these have not only greatly deepened Mr. Jins ideas on sculpt, but have also endued him with a kind of spirit that is originated from the analysis on the visual senses expression of an object itself, and then furthermore, based on the academic style passed down by generations and generations in China Academy of Fine Arts, they re-shape some thought expression particularity that has become common since the early period the of academy establishment and that keeps to the thing-in-itself from visual sense.


  (II) The Lamplight of Jin Yide


  Mr. Jin acted as the tutor for our class from 1979 to 1980. We have deeply sensed from him the temperament that is sensitive in thinking and that shows concern to the thing-in-itself from visual sense. In the autumn of 1979, the National Second Line Drawing Symposium was held at China Academy of Fine Arts at which Mr. Jin made a speech Some Opinions on Reforming The Existing Line Drawing Teaching, gave a systematic introduction of Borbas line drawing teaching to all art colleges nationwide for the first time and aroused great concern as a result; furthermore, the influences of such concern even spread to the line drawing exercise all over the academy. Mr. Jins line drawing works became a requisite reference beside the high-rise line drawing racks in the academy and became the reference for those students who yearned for walking out the light and shade line drawing, and made the earliest analysis and explorations on the expression.


  In the early summer of 1980, we went to Shitang Town, Wenling at eastern Zhejiang to draw from nature led by Mr. Jin. At that time, Shitang Town was unadorned but filled with vigor, houses built by stones were close to cliffs and they seemed to have grown out from stones, tier upon tier and formed a unified entity. There was a kind of natural poetic conception in the overall sculpt. Being restricted in some color tone imitation technique of realistic painting then, however, we just hid ourselves at street corners and road crossings all day, repeated the existing life drawing composition from ancestors, and just turned deaf ears to the naturally existing poetic conception that produced freely at Shitang.


  Mr. Jin was well aware of this, but didnt say much; instead, he brought us to go to the sea, asked us to look back the soaring Shitang on the seagoing vessel, and awakened us the visual sense through the lookout that had been restricted by our existing color tone composition so as to make us sense the overall viewing method in the visual field of the vast sea and sky. After that, we also went to Yandang Mountain which is more soaring and made us at our wits end with the existing Su Party life drawing method. Then, Mr. Jin brought us to have sightseeing from peaks in the moonlight and appreciate the overall poetic conception of hills in the misty night view. His purpose was to relieve us from the existing western life drawing approaches and unseal our own visual sense with the particular style of Chinese landscape instead. That night, Mr. Jin mentioned painting masters Pan Tianshou and Huang Binhong etc. to us. When we persisted in the pursuit and exploration on western painting innovation, such of his words only relieved us slightly from the solidified restrictions in our heart, and actually we failed to suddenly get aware of the natural poetic conception existing in Chinas landscape. I remember that Mr. Jin had two pieces of oil life drawing which were covered by dark green mountains, outlined with black lines and looked integrated with intensive stone walls. While the distant waterfall in the painting seemed to be grasped from memories and just made us feel novel and astonishing.







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