02 View of “Passing on the Torch” exhibition

In the afternoon of July 26, 2013, “Passing on the Torch – Exhibition of Chen Yifei’s Document (1960-1980)” and “Passing the Torch – Exhibition of Xia Baoyuan’s Works (1968-1988)” were ceremoniously held at the Art Museum of Shanghai Oil Painting & Sculpture Institute. With a large number of documents, real objects, videos and original works, focusing on some sections, the exhibitions feature the two artists’ brilliant academic contributions to Shanghai Oil Painting & Sculpture Institute, a reflection of adapting to the times, independent spirit, striving to opening up, have been accumulated over two decades.

Since 2011, Shanghai Oil Painting & Sculpture Institute has launched a series of exhibitions generally entitled “Passing on the Torch”, aimed at combing through the history of Shanghai Oil Painting & Sculpture Institute, with specific case studies, excavating and summarizing intrinsic academic traditions. It has successfully hosted six exhibitions of “Passing on the Torch”.

To complement the exhibitions, during the two weeks of exhibit dates, the Art Museum of Shanghai Oil Painting & Sculpture Institute will launch two lectures entitled “Going into Master Chen Yifei” and “Looking Back to the 1970s”, respectively lectured by Chen Yiming, brother of Chen Yifei, and Xia Baoyuan, meanwhile two public art educational activities are specifically held for the majority of young students in the summer vacation.

Passing on the Torch – Exhibition of Chen Yifei’s Document (1960-1980)

“Passing on the Torch – Exhibition of Chen Yifei’s Document (1960-1980)” is divided into four chapters including: “School Times”, “In the Oil Painting & Sculpture Studio”, “Emerging” and “Benchmark of the Times”. It exhibits the works of watercolours, sketches, drawings, exercises, drafts, original works, notes, photographs, publications, videos, etc., combining with the background of the times and historical literature, to comprehensively and objectively show the artistic trajectory of Chen Yifei’s hard work and study, as well as a large number of works, created during the best decade of his creative passion. Among the documents there’s a note written by Chen Yifei to encourage himself in 1963 – “Fight against the difficulties, never shake in face of storms, never giving up in the face of being criticized, never posess arrogance in face of recognition”.

It focuses on a series of benchmarks that are significant works created in the 1970s, such as “Pioneers” (in cooperation with Wei Jingshan in 1971), “Red Flag” double paintings (1971), “Ode to the Yellow River” (1972), “Occupying the Presidential Palace” (1976), “Pacing” (1979), in the perspective of the history of art, demonstrating the process of the birth of an artwork and the law of artistic evolution. It helps to reconstruct a more three-dimensional, rich and real image of the artist to the public. Many works of literature are initially opened to the public.

Passing on the Torch – Exhibition of Xia Baoyuan’s Works (1968-1988)

“Passing on the Torch – Exhibition of Xia Baoyuan’s Works (1968-1988)” is a collection of the selected works created by Xia Baoyuan from the 1960s to the 1980s, more than 80 works, covering three categories: oil paintings, drawings and ink comics. Among it features “Minister and Me” collected by Shanghai Oil Painting & Sculpture Institute, “Poor – Fang Zhimin”, and so on, many of the works are opened to the public for the first time.

Known as one of the three talents in Shanghai Art School, Xia Baoyuan’s works are full of artistic talent and urban sentiment, and uses accurate, vivid and delicate plastic. His ink drawings and comics are especially widely respected. Xia said: “I deeply know that our generation is deficient. When we were students in the 1950s going through to the 1960s, the valuable context was broken. At the moment, painting is working with international standards, and forced to play a tie game on a stage with ‘animation and game’, ‘creative design and new ideas’, ‘new concepts of Sichuan Cuisine’, etc. I have to quit the game as I used to do, to stick to the duty of our generation. Because I realized how history rises circuitously and goes forwards meanderingly and zigzagging.”

The exhibitions continue until September 12, 2013.

About the exhibitions

Duration: July 26 – September 12, 2013

Venue: Art Museum of Shanghai Oil Painting & Sculpture Institute

Translated by Chen Peihua and edited by Sue/CAFA ART INFO

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