Rural creative center masters the art of rejuvenating hope

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Shen's oil painting, Red and White. [Photo by Long Shao/For China Daily]

"Furthermore, the recent arrivals have lit up the villages in the county with their youthful vigor."

Yang Shuqing, a white-collar worker from Taiwan, has asked for a sabbatical from her job and is now studying under Lin at the center.

"When I told a friend that I was tired of my work and wanted to study painting, she gave me the information about Lin," she says.

"Without any hesitation, I came here. I make full use of my time to improve my drawing skills, and I feel more relaxed than before.

"Whether I choose to stay here or return to my hometown, I believe I can easily earn a living through painting."

The center emphasizes helping people living with disabilities and in poverty.

Lin says: "The center has provided jobs to more than 1,000 impoverished and disabled people after teaching them how to paint. Art helps them become stronger."

More than 6,000 of the students' artworks have been sold, earning more than 1 million yuan.

According to the center's policies, the painters are only required to pay back the cost of the paints and canvases they use.

"I can meet people from around the world in this place," says Zhou Fenfang, chair of the Nanping Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.

"The center is expected to arouse the consciousness of the villagers with the help of art and preserve the roots and veins of traditional Chinese culture.

"Furthermore, with the influx of new arrivals, the improved infrastructure and emerging entertainment spots around the village make it more livable than before."

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