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China's peasant Van Gogh creates nostalgia

By Lin Qi (chinadaily.com.cn) Updated: 2016-08-15 11:28 Comments

China's peasant Van Gogh creates nostalgia

Xiong Qinghua's oil painting work. [Photo provided to China Daily]

The painting Walking on Stilts draws on his childhood game. He elongates the poles from top to bottom of the surface of the painting, and places the playing boys not in a natural setting but in the universe, being surrounded by planets and man-made satellites. The unexpected juxtaposition of these objects delivers his hope for a broader vision of rural children.

Another painting Unruly Buffalo recalls his early experiences of transporting grains with his father, Xiong Guangyuan, on a cart. Xiong highlights the freedom of rural life with wit and humor: A rebellious buffalo breaks loose and flies up into the sky, pulling two farmers up and above the clouds.

In his other works Xiong expresses concerns over the dying folk customs because of depopulation of young adults and the industrial pollution that is damaging villages' environment.

Xiong's brushwork embodies slight sadness and loneliness. His many childhood friends migrate to the cities and when they return, "they become unaccustomed to the peace and humidity of their home, which makes me feel inexplicably sad," he says.

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