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A Rukai Girl

Tags: art | Chang Yi-Hsiung | painting

Chang Yi-Hsiung (1914–), 1957

Charcoal painting, 48.5 x 31.5 cm

Born in Chiayi, Chang Yi-Hsiung was determined to become a painter when, at the age of ten, he encountered Chen Cheng-Bo sketching beside a fountain in central Chiayi. Later, he attended Kawabata Painting School in Japan and taught at National Taiwan Normal University and National University of Arts, contributing to the fine arts education in the 1950s. Chang resided in Japan in the 60s and currently lives in Paris, the city he deems the most beautiful. Completed in 1957 when Chang was 43, A Rukai girl exemplifies the painter's firm grip on sketching. Vivid, effortless and lifelike, the clear-cut lines depict the sharply defined features of Taiwanese aborigines and unveil an ingenuous and natural disposition. This portrait is rare among Chang's works since most of them are landscape and still life oil paintings. It shows Chang's relaxed and spontaneous style, which can be traced back to his early artistic career, when he had to make ends meet as a poor painter. Doing street and personal portraits on the road, after all, was part of Chang's life when he wandered around the world.

Department of Graphic Communications and Digital Publishing, Shih Hsin University Digital archiving project of the Shung Ye Museum of Formosan Aborigines

Original Chinese text is composed by Professor Cheng-Ming Su, Department of Visual Arts, Taipei Municipal University of Education