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Art of the South Nanling: A Selection of Guangdong Painting from the Hong Kong Museum of Art
11 June 2021 - 3 November 2021Free
“Lingnan” is situated south of the great Nanling Mountains that geographically separate it from the region of Jiangnan, while leafing through the history of art brings up the term “Lingnan” as a cultural footnote marking the development of art in southern China. Over the past 100 years or so, the region of Guangdong located in South Nanling has become the cradle of modern Chinese painting. From its origins, Guangdong painting quickly flourished and established itself in Chinese art history as a new offshoot branching out from the traditional mainstream of its northern counterparts.
For many centuries, Lingnan remained a far-flung southern borderland. Remote and treacherous, it was a destination for government officials and scholars who were transferred or even exiled there when their careers took a downwards turn. The situation changed in the Tang dynasty when roads were built to connect the south. The subsequent southern migration of the Song royal family and increased trade in the Ming and Qing dynasties fuelled the growth of Guangdong, and the province became a hub of external trade and economic development. Many painting and calligraphy works were enabled to collect and circulate, and Guangdong artists earned a reputation for their distinctive style. In more recent times, they have become well recognised as their counterparts in Shanghai, Beijing and Tianjin.
This exhibition showcases over 80 works from Guangdong dating from the late Ming dynasty and early Qing dynasty to the 20th century that outline the historical and artistic development of Chinese painting in the Lingnan region. The exhibition presents how artists from Guangdong paved the way for the modernisation of Chinese painting by adopting both traditional and modern ideas, and integrating local and foreign elements during the era of great change in China. Guangdong painting first developed in the Ming dynasty, made great progress in the Qing dynasty and was once again elevated by the Lingnan School and Chinese Painting Research Society in more modern times. Guangdong painters have always been dedicated to finding a way to progress, and, although they took different routes, the early eclectics and the traditionalists were essentially aiming for the same goal. Clashing with and complementing each other and thus giving full scope to 20th century Guangdong painting, they not only exerted a major influence on Hong Kong’s early painting movement but also wrote an important chapter in the history of modern Chinese painting. ____________________________________________________
Presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department
Organised by the Hong Kong Museum of Art
Chinese Painting and Calligraphy Gallery, 4/F
ABOUT THE ARTIST / ORGANISEREstablished in 1962, HKMoA is the first public art museum in the city, now custodian of an art collection of over 17,000 items, representing the unique cultural legacy of Hong Kong's connection across the globe. By curating a wide world of contrasts, from old to new, Chinese to Western, local to international, with a Hong Kong viewpoint, we aspire to refreshing ways of looking at tradition and making art relevant to everyone, creating new experiences and understanding.
- 11 June 2021
- 3 November 2021
- Event Category:
- Ink & Drawing, Painting