Selected Chinese Prints of the 20th Century
24 January 2012
The South African National Association for the Visual Arts (SANAVA), in collaboration with the Voortrekker Monument and the Embassy of the Peoples’ Republic of China, has pleasure in launching an exhibition of an exquisite Chinese State Collection of visual art, ‘Selected Chinese Prints of the 20th Century’.
The exhibition will be opened on Thursday, 26 January 2012 at 18h00 for 18h30 in Gallery 20.20 of the Voortrekker Monument. Mr YIN Yali, Counsellor (Culture) of the Embassy, will open the exhibition.
The history of China’s woodblock prints dates back over two thousand years. Woodblock prints were widespread during the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907), developed fully during the Song (960 -1207) and Yuan (1206 – 1368) dynasties, and reached its height during the Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644). However, at the end of the Qing Dynasty (1644 – 1911), when other printing techniques like lithography entered China, woodblock printing gradually went into decline.
The ‘new woodblock print’ of China, a movement launched by LU Xun in 1931, marked a turning point in the history of China’s print art. It differs from traditional prints not only in techniques, but also in artistic ideals and social implications. From the outset, the new print has been closely linked to the liberation cause of the Chinese nation, and the life of the Chinese people.
After a period of suspension during the Cultural Revolution (1966 – 1976), China’s print art burst into an unprecedented full bloom, thanks to the nation’s reform and opening policy. A great variety of techniques have been used, including woodblock, lithography, copper plate, silkscreen, and gypsography and many other forms of usage. The workmanship and visual languages of print works have attained remarkable degrees of maturity and purity, ranking highly among contemporary across the world.
The exhibition will run from 26 January till 31 March 2012. It can be visited from Mondays tol Fridays from 08h00 till 15h30.