Fri, Apr 06, 2018 - Page 14 News List

Art exhibition listings

By Sheryl Cheung  /  Contributing reporter

Chihiro Iwasaki, The Girl Wearing a Red Woolen Cap (1972).

Photo Courtesy of the National Museum of History

To celebrate the 100th birthday of prominent Japanese illustrator Chihiro Iwasaki, the National Museum of History is hosting Children in the World: Peace and Happiness for All, which features a number of Iwasaki’s picture books and 100 of her pencil and watercolor drawings created between 1940 and 1970. Iwasaki lived through World War II and the cruelties she witnessed during wartime led her to create numerous works dedicated to world peace. She was especially concerned about the happiness of children and wished to “give children a safe and happy environment to grow up,” according to the museum’s press release. Iwasaki was known for her loving portrayal of children and flowers, which she published widely in newspapers, magazines, novels and picture books. Primarily using India ink and watercolors, her distinct painting style integrated Japanese and Western water-based painting techniques. Highlights include Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window, a best-selling picture book written by writer Tetsuko Kuroyanagi. Based on the childhood memories of Kuroyanagi, the book tells a tale of a young girl who attended a liberal school during wartime in Japan.

■ National Museum of History (國立歷史博物館), 49 Nanhai Rd, Taipei City (台北市南海路49號), tel: (02) 2361-0270. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 10am to 6pm

■ Until April 22

Organized by the Taipei Ministry of Culture, Dawn and Dusk: The Laurels and Controversy of Literary Awards (文學獎的光明與幽闇特展) takes us through the history of Taiwan’s literary awards since the Japanese colonial period to the present. The show, in Chinese, features a collection of interviews, surveys, literary works and artifacts that offer valuable insight into how literary trends reflect Taiwan’s changing social and political climate. From poetry and prose competitions during the Japanese era, anti-communist writings during the 1950’s and the proliferation of newspaper and school-run award programs since the lifting of martial law in 1987, the field of literature has undergone a dynamic range of artistic evolution. Exhibition highlights include over 100 award-winning books and a series of recitations by their authors; video interviews of writers, award jurors and organizers, and publishing houses; and the impression lovers of literature have towards the Taipei Literary Awards. The exhibition is run concurrently with the Taipei Literature Festival, which also includes an ongoing lecture series and a film program that highlights the lives of Bob Dylan and Mishima Yukio.

■ Taipei Zhongshan Hall (臺北市中山堂), 98, Yanping S Rd, Taipei City (台北市延平南路98號), tel: (02) 2381-8781. Open daily from 9:30am to 9:00pm

■ Until tomorrow

Fineries of Forgery: “Suzhou Fakes” and Their Influence in the 16th to 18th Century (偽好物 — 16至18世紀「蘇州片」及其影響) highlights the peculiar Chinese tradition of appreciating exceptional copies of original works. The term weihaowu (偽好物), coined by the great Northern Song painter and collector Mi Fu (米芾), literally translates as fake goods and refers to imitation copies that display such fine artistic merit that they are recognized as works of art themselves. Many of these forgeries were produced in the 16th and 17th centuries, a time marked by rising popularity of paintings, calligraphy and antiques as consumer items. The market favored works by famous Suzhou masters from the Tang, Song, Yuan and Ming dynasties. Despite the wide range of attributions, forgeries created during this period are commonly known as Suzhou fakes. The forgery workshops catered to “a public seeking famous literary allusions and popular auspicious themes in art” and created popular products such as copies of Up the River on Qingming (清明上河圖) and Shanglin Park (上林賦). Though the distinction between original and fake copies was critical to connoisseurship, copying original works were accepted as part of a general culture of art appreciation. Even the emperors ordered court copies of famous Suzhou paintings, including Ding Guanpeng’s (丁觀鵬) copy of Qiu Ying’s (仇英) painting, Elegant Gathering in the Western Garden. The exhibition offers an interesting juxtaposition between Qiu’s original work and Ding’s attribution. “The Qianlong emperor…inscribed on the original about the coloring and formal likeness, which became points to be emulated in this copy,“ according to the museum.

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