From commissioned paintings of political and historical moments to highly individualized executions of different styles and subjects. The development of Chinese art reflects the sweeping changes in Chinese society over the past sixty years. Each turn of event has been recorded on canvas, in detail and with enthusiasm, by generations of Chinese painters. Collectively, they have painted a panorama of a fast-developing society.
A journey back into history invariably leads to this critical moment for the Chinese nation. On October 1st, 1949, Chairman Mao declared the founding of New China. Even from the canvas, the nationwide jubilation is palpable. Experiencing a baptism of war and hardships, many Chinese painters turned to historical subjects in the 1950s.
Visitors appreciate an oil painting at China's 11th National OilPainting Works Exhibition in Wuhan, central China's Hubei province,Sept. 26, 2009. The exhibition which opened on Saturday opens tothe public free of charge until early November this year.
Their choice of subjects echoed what Chairman Mao proposed. In 1956, during a meeting in Beijing, the late leader said that art should serve the people and socialism. Different views were encouraged under the slogan: "Let a hundred flowers blossom and a hundred schools of thought contend." Mao's speech sent a spasm of change through fine arts.
It all started with an article on the revival of traditional Chinese painting.