Lot 3607
  • 3607

Fang Zhaolin

200,000 - 250,000 HKD
1,180,000 HKD
bidding is closed


  • Fang Zhaolin
  • Yellow River
  • ink and colour on paper, framed
signed LIANG XI FANG ZHAOLIN, dated 1988, summer, and with three seals of the artist: Zhao Lin; Yan Nian Yi Shou; Xiong Huai Zu Guo


The Mary and George Bloch Collection

Catalogue Note

Fang Zhaolin is not only an artist recognized for her significant contribution to the development of Chinese painting in the 20th century, but represents a worldly intellectual and woman ahead of her time in modern China. Born in Jiangsu Province, China in 1914, Fang Zhaolin began her studies in China and excelled in traditional Chinese painting under the tutelage of Qian Songyan and Chen Jiucun. The tumultous political situation in China brought Fang to the UK in 1937 when she was accepted to Manchester University to study European history. In 1957 she enrolled in the University of Hong Kong to study Chinese philosophy and literature, whereupon she returned to her artistic studies and painting. In the 1960s she studied guohua (national painting) with Lingan School master Zhao Shaoang and later transitioned her artistic practice to explore expressionist styles with renowned modern painter Zhang Daqian. Her studies in Europe and travels between China and the Americas provided Fang with the opportunity to develop an artistic language rooted in tradition yet is undeniably modern. Her paintings are manifestations of her lifetime of intellectual and artistic curiosity in an era of change, combined with a determination for survival and recognition of a better world.

"Yellow River" features a monumental cliff face ascending above a flowing river, which greatly reduces the space often found in traditional landscape paintings. Combined with Fang's intentional naiveté style, her compositions are immediately accessibility to a diverse audience.  Fang imbues vitality in her works through bold, calligraphic outlines of the mountains, intense colors, exquisite control of the ink medium, and skillfully executed figures and details.  The colorful landscape scene is inscribed with the phrases "Cherish One's Own Country" and "Prolong Life and Increase Longevity," which both contribute to the sense of cheerfulness and optimism often found in her paintings.