On May 13, 2016, jointly hosted by National Art Museum of China and CAFA, “Marks in Mind – Wen Lipeng Oil Painting Art Exhibition” grandly opened at the National Art Museum of China. The exhibition is part of the National Arts Collection and Donation Reward Program and also one of A Series of Artworks Donated to NAMOC 2016.
Deputy Director of National Art Museum of China An Yuanyuan hosted the opening ceremony, the artist Wen Lipeng and his wife Zhang Tongxia, as well as their families attended the opening ceremony, in addition to leaders from CAFA, teachers and students, the artists of the same generation and senior scholars gathered at the opening ceremony. Among them, the Director of National Art Museum of China Wu Weishan, President of CAFA Fan Di’an, the famous artist Prof. Zhan Jianjun from CAFA and the artist Wen Lipeng respectively addressed the opening ceremony.
Wen Lipeng was born in 1931 and enrolled in the Art Department of the College of Fine Arts, Northern University in Shanxi-Hebei-Shandong-Henan Border Region in 1947. He graduated from the oil painting tutorial class of CAFA in 1963 and taught in the Department of Oil Painting, now Wen Lipeng is a professor of CAFA and deputy director of the Art Committee of China Oil Painting Society, deputy director of Oil Painting Art Committee of China Artists Association. As the son of a famous poet Wen Yiduo, it can be said that his road of oil painting reveals the infiltration and integration of life experiences and fate of the times.
The exhibition features more than 130 classic works of different periods, comprehensively presenting Wen Lipeng’s creative career. It is divided into four parts: the first part reviews the selected creative works by Wen Lipeng, to showcase 27 important representative and donated works during his creative career of oil painting. The second part focuses on the presentation of 40 pieces of work themed on characters created by Wen in various periods, in terms of content it consists of the special creation of “Wen Yiduo” and evolutionary martyrs group paintings. In the third part it features 40 paintings themed on landscape created by the artist. In the fourth part, the southern wall of the round hall mainly presents 40 sketches of characters and landscapes by Wen Lipeng from various periods.
Wen Lipeng addressed the opening ceremony and said that, “In the past 69 years, although my art is far from the ideal development, it is still the result of my artistic pursuit with painstaking efforts.” Throughout Wen Lipeng’s works, “Internationale” expresses the martyr’s noble spirit of selflessly sacrificing life in order to pursue the truth; “Daughter of Earth” is in praise of the innocent and upright character of the pioneers, condemning the evil atrocities, through the social responsibility of artists to arouse the audience’s intuitive knowledge of the truth, goodness and the beautiful; after the Cultural Revolution, he combined his insights on life and re-read his father’s works, Wen had a more profound understanding of his father, this understanding both reflected the spiritual that corresponded with the kinship between the father and son, and a deeper perception of society and life after the catastrophe, all of which became the mental source of the creation of Wen Yiduo series of works – the birth of “Ode to the Red Candle” both express his desire to cherish the memory of his father Wen Yiduo, and the mental sentiment and sublimation of the suffering fate of modern China.
In the creation of landscape, he also gave it the same solemn and noble ideological content, moving through the landscapes and strong inner emotions, integrating the natural environment with social reality. After the 1980s, Wen’s creation of oil painting started to clear and he was aware of the ontological language of oil painting, to pursue the magnificence, beauty, noblity and power in the creation of oil painting.
As part of National Arts Collection and Donation Reward Program, Wen Lipeng freely donated more than 10 representative works to the National Art Museum of China, which is permanently collected by the national treasury of art. At the end of the opening ceremony, Director Wu Weishan awarded Wen Lipeng and his wife a donation certificate.
The exhibition remains on view until May 25, 2016.
Text by Lin Jiabin/CAFA ART INFO, Photo by Lin Jiabin & National Art Museum of China
Translated by Chen Peihua and edited by Sue/CAFA ART INFO