A veteran artist who has practiced the unique art of finger painting for 60 years has called for the revitalization of this endangered form of traditional Chinese painting.
Liu Duojun, the grandson of Liu Xiling, a premodern master of finger painting in China, said finger painting, or ink painting with fingers directly on the paper instead of a paintbrush, covers all aspects of traditional Chinese painting, including landscapes, flowers and birds, and animals.
Liu kicked off a 10-day finger painting show Thursday in southwest China's Sichuan Province, displaying more than 40 of his works.
He said finger painting dates back to the Tang Dynasty (618-907BC) and the art entered its golden period in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911 AD). In 1915, his grandfather won the gold medal at the Panama Exhibition held in the United States with one of his works.
But the popularity of finger painting in recent years has been on the decline in China, Liu said. Finger painting has played an important role in the history of traditional Chinese painting and the rejuvenation of this traditional art needs the efforts of all sides in society, said Liu.
Liu, 80, now a first-class painter of the Hong Kong Art Gallery, took up the art of finger painting at the age of 20.
Liu's exhibition is being held in Jiangyou city in Sichuan Province, the hometown of Li Bai, one of the greatest poets in Tang Dynasty (618-907 BC).
(Xinhua News Agency September 13, 2003)