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Exhibition of socialist realism paintings opens in Shanghai

(chinadaily.com.cn) | Nov 29, 2017

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A painting by Zhao Wangyun. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Zhao Wangyun (1906-77) co-founded the Chang'an School of Painting in the 1960s with two other ink-brush artists based in Xi'an in Northwestern China. They sought to revive the tradition of Chinese ink art through the depiction of the everyday lives of common people.

Zhao once said that, "Happiness is traded with nothing but labor. The landscape looks beautiful mostly because of human activity."

Looking Back on Cloudy Peaks, an exhibition running at the China Art Museum in Shanghai, is currently showing dozens of Zhao's paintings. It runs through Jan 30.

The works on display come from a donation of 351 paintings that Zhao produced between the 1930s and 1970s by his family to the National Art Museum of China in Beijing.

Zhao is best known for his figurative paintings and landscapes. He concentrated on the daily lives of farmers, factory workers and ethnic groups. His landscapes focused on the country's economic reconstruction in a trend toward socialist realism after the founding of New China.

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