Faces from reality

By Lin Qi | China Daily | Updated: 2018-07-10 07:39
[Photo provided to China Daily]

A high school dropout who became a leading portrait painter, Xin Dongwang knew all too well of the struggles facing China's rural migrant workers, Lin Qi reports.

As a humble rural artisan from northern China who rose to become one of the country's leading portrait painters, Xin Dongwang shared many of the hardships and setbacks faced by migrant workers moving to the city-and the compassion he felt for them quickly became his hallmark.

Xin, who died in 2014 at 51, left behind him an oeuvre of oil portraits that were hailed by his fellow artists and critics alike as a collective profile of the grassroots Chinese people who strove to follow their dreams of building a better life.

Xin once said, "I hope that my paintings embrace the humanistic spirit. I hope that my paintings show the temperament of my nation."

These words open an exhibition titled Psyche: A Portfolio of Xin Dongwang's Works, which shows a collection of his drawings and paintings at the Tsinghua University Art Museum.

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