Exhibition of Qi Baishi's art opens at Hungarian National Gallery

( Xinhua ) Updated: 2015-04-24 10:16:19

An exhibition of the works of Qi Baishi, one of 20th century China's most outstanding artists, opened at the Hungarian National Gallery in Budapest on Thursday.

Called Fascination of Nature, this is the first time Qi's retrospective of 108 paintings collected by Beijing Fine Art Academy has been on display outside of China.

Li Wei, head of the publicity department of Beijing government, called Qi's work a precious stone in the fabric of over five thousand years of civilization.

Qi's freehand brushwork, Li said, bridges the differences between east and west in portraying his love of all life, including fish, crabs, insects, flowers, and birds.

Peter Hoppal, Hungarian state secretary for culture, noted that the display was one of a series of Chinese art on show in Hungary and that Hungarian audiences were very interested in both traditional and contemporary Chinese art and culture.

Beijing Fine Art Academy director Wang Mingming spoke of the influence Qi's art has had on European audiences. Wang suggested that the reason was Qi's simple but unique way of seeing the world around him.

Laszlo Baan, director of the National Gallery, underlined that Qi was one of China's most respected 20th century artists. He called it an honor for Hungary to be the first country outside China to display the retrospective.

Qi was born in 1864 and died in 1957. His watercolors are often playful in style. He has painted animals, scenery, vegetables and other subjects we come across every day.

Chinese Ambassador to Hungary Xiao Qian attended the opening ceremony of the exhibition. The exhibition will open to the public on Friday and remain open until June 28.



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