CRI听力:Master of traditional Chinese fine brushwork Qin Sheng

Source: CRI    2017-10-11  我要投稿   论坛   Favorite  

Qin Sheng is a renowned Chinese painter.He is not only famed for traditional Chinese fine brushwork but also for the contributions he has made to the cultural exchanges between China and Japan.

A journalist from Qingdao Radio and TV station recently met this painting master and wrote down his story. CRI's Yu Yang has more.

Painter Qin Sheng now has a studio in the southern part of Qingdao, where he could paint and house his years' store of various artworks.

The first half of each month is usually the busiest time for Qin Sheng because students of all age groups would come to visit his studio, learning how to portray an ancient lady via traditional Chinese painting techniques.

"Zhang Yi is now a teacher, and she paints very well. Though Ge Juan is a starter, her technique is not bad. This is the youngest student and she's only 17 years old."

In the latter half of each month, Qin Sheng would fly to Fukuoka City in Japan, where he teaches a group of Japanese students how to paint. Qin Sheng explains:

"Originally I had four students, and now the number of my students there reaches 200. Many students are willing to continue their studies here rather than giving up halfway."

This is what 72-year-old Qin Sheng's life looks like. After many years spent in Japan, he's decided to return home.

He said two years ago, he prepared to shift his work focus from abroad to back home. This way, he could teach more domestic students and pass down traditional Chinese painting techniques.

Qin Sheng was born in 1946 with both parents being soldiers. When he entered a Junior high school in Qingdao, he encountered Chinese brush painting master Chen Shourong, who he credited as his mentor and the person that inspired his artistic career.

Qin Sheng explains again.

"When I first attended his class, I surprisingly found his paintings are so lively, with both the birds and flowers all being so vivid. Later he guided me to an ink painting exhibition, where I had the chance to view Qi Baishi's paintings on shrimp and grass insect. From then on, I was determined to learn Chinese painting. My teacher Chen Shourong and I establish good mutual understandings. We have an art class every week. I often finish the homework as early as possible. And then I could visit my teacher's home on Sunday to gain maximum knowledge."

At the age of 17, Qin Sheng was recruited to the army in which he'd spend then next decade.

In 1973, he was discharged from military service. It would not be until he reached the age of 33 that he would return to his career in painting.

At that time, traditional Chinese realistic painting was gradually dying down in Qingdao. However, this is a Chinese cultural tradition. Traditional Chinese realistic paintings usually center on graceful females, such as Dunhuang murals and the Yuan Dynasty's fresco in the Yongle Palace.

Qin Sheng's second teacher is Wang Fengnian, a renowned painter in Jinan city's Arts and Crafts research institute. Everything about teaching and learning is via writing since Wang is born deaf and mute.

"I wrote down my question and he would answer in writing. Every time he painted, I would spend the whole day observing his technique. When my teacher decided to rest, I would have a break accordingly. After watching my teacher's entire painting process, I would practice at least ten times. This approach looks very clumsy, but effective."

Although Wang Fengnian had only spent a mere 25 days studying under the guidance of his teacher, Qin Sheng was enthusiastic about the progress he has made in such a short period of time.

Having completed his study in Jinan in Shandong, Qin Sheng returned to his hometown of Qingdao, where he continued practicing traditional Chinese realistic painting for eight months and further strengthened his skillset.

By 1990, Qinsheng had successfully held three exhibitions in Hangzhou, Guangzhou and Macau. Qin's paintings are also quite popular among collectors. However at the age of 45, he decided to continue his studies in Beijing.

"I know I hadn't gone to school for a formal study of painting. The learning experiences in the junior high school are na?ve and inadequate. Later I learnt brush painting skills for a short period of 25 days. A bulk of my development came through practice. Although the exhibitions were all very successful and I won a lot of awards, I always think I should learn from scratch."

Qin Sheng was soon successfully admitted to the Graduate School of Chinese National Academy of Arts in Beijing. After a bitter struggle for survival in the capital city, he gradually got accustomed to his new life. In 1990, he won the second prize in an International Painting Contest.

Here in the capital city, he also made friends with Dong Shouping, Yin Shoushi and other famous painters, who offered him sources of inspiration as to how to improve his painting techniques.

In 1995, Qin Sheng travelled to Japan, where he has stayed for more than 20 years. Qin Sheng recalls his experiences when he first arrived there.

"NHK produced two feature programs on my exhibitions in Japan. Four major newspapers in Fukuoka, including "Asahi Shimbun" and "New Japan News", carried reports on my traditional Chinese realistic paintings. After reading newspapers, ordinary Japanese citizens felt quite surprised for they never saw the Chinese paintings like this. They show a strong interest in traditional Chinese realistic paintings, which emphasize intricate and small details. With many students coming to me, I soon set up a Japan-China ink painting research institute."

During his twenty-year stay in Japan, he has held over 40 exhibitions and played a good role in spreading Chinese culture. He's also made lots of contributions to the person-to-person, cultural exchanges between China and Japan.

Unlike his students elsewhere who are much younger, Qin Sheng disclosed his Japanese students are all senior citizens.

"My Japanese students are all quite nice to me. The average age of my students was around fifty to sixty years old. The eldest student is over 90 years old. They respect me and are all willing to help me. When they attended my class, they brought me vegetables and rice since I was living in poverty upon my first days in Japan. Some of them are sixty or seventy, taking a backpack inside which there's a bag of rice. I have established close friendship with my lovely students since then. At the beginning we had only four to five classrooms. Today the institute is expanded to contain 17 classrooms."

In August this year, a Japan-China ink painting exhibition, curated by Qin Sheng, was held in Qingdao. Over seventy years old now, Qin Sheng said his biggest will is cultivating more students who are good at fine brushwork in his hometown.

He added he's very serious about the selection of his students. He would take into account whether these students have a real passion for fine brushwork and whether they would give up their art pursuit for being short of money.

Qin Sheng said he needs to impart his skills to those who have persistency in learning fine brushwork so that the school of Chinese traditional painting could carry forward and boost.


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