Li Zou, award-winning Chinese artist, will present Ancient Chinese Women: Lives of Concubines in the Palace, exhibition and lectures at Springfield CollegeSeptember 17, 2010
SPRINGFIELD, Mass., Sept. 17, 2010 -- Li Zou, winner of prestigious national awards in China and awards in other countries for her meticulous-style paintings and research on historic Chinese females, will present an exhibition and lectures at Springfield College Oct. 4 to 7, 2010, open to the public free of charge.
Zou’s highly detailed paintings with sophisticated use of color have been cited as classical work in Chinese painting history that help complete the record of illustrations of historic Chinese women.
Paintings in the exhibition depict important ancient concubines, most of whom became empresses, who made their marks on Chinese history. Their roles ranged from stateswomen, warriors, social reformers, economists, educators, artists, loving mothers and talented hostesses, to cruel despots, tragic victims of palace politics, murderesses, manipulators, mistresses and more.
A key work, “Liao Empress - Chinese Female Military Strategist and Politician" depicts Xian Yanyan, an 11th century empress. She is credited with presiding in court and carrying out reforms that emancipated the slaves, developed agricultural production, protected commerce and introduced taxation. In foreign relations, she pursued a policy of befriending distant states while attacking those nearby, and won over the Western Xia Regime to fight against the Northern Song Dynasty. In 1004, she mounted a large-scale military offensive that defeated the Song Dynasty and resulted in the Chanyuan Peace Treaty.
According to Springfield College President Richard B. Flynn, "Li Zou's excellence as an artist and researcher has brought her international prominence and recognition. Having an artist of her caliber exhibit and lecture on our campus presents our students and faculty, and the local community, with a unique opportunity to learn about her technique and her inspiration, as well as about ancient Chinese history and culture. It is a pleasure for us to welcome such a distinguished artist to the college."
The exhibition in the Cleveland E. and Phyllis B. Dodge Room of the Richard B. Flynn Campus Union at Springfield College will be open Oct. 4 to 7, on Monday from 3 to 6 p.m., on Tuesday and Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and on Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Zou will also present the lecture “Chinese Women in History,” on Tuesday, Oct. 5, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., in Marsh Memorial Chapel, at the college, and the lecture and demonstration “Chinese Painting and the Meticulous Technique of Li Zou,” on Wednesday, Oct. 6, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., in the YMCA Multipurpose Room of Judd Gymnasia on the campus.
Zou’s paintings, “A Hundred Concubines in China,” won the bronze medal at the 9th National Art Exhibition in China. Her work has been acquired by museums, art galleries and private collections.
Zou is well known for her delicate, meticulous-style painting of human figures, a style that she adopted after 1990. In her early career, she worked with comics, illustrations, and New Year paintings.
With more than 40 years of experience in the arts, she is a member of the Chinese Art Association and the executive vice president of the Hong Kong International Association of Meticulous-style Painting. She is also an advisor of the South China Art Association, director of the Fushan Art Academy, and a guest artist for the Hong Kong Yunfeng Art Gallery.
Through her exhibition and lectures at Springfield College, Zou intends to present ancient Chinese history and traditional culture to her American colleagues and friends and encourage cultural and art exchanges between China and the United States.