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Heritage Museum shows Chinese paintings by Lee Yue-hong

About 40 Chinese paintings selected from Lee Yue-hong's painting series on "Huangshan Landscapes" and "A Hundred Birds", will go on display from December 14 until September 14, 2009, at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum.

"The Perseverant Spirit: The Art of Lee Yue-hong" is the fourth exhibition of the "Chao Shao-an Student Exhibition Series" launched by the Heritage Museum to introduce the characteristics of the painting of Lingnan School and innovations made under its heritage by individual artists of the school.

Born in 1927 in Xinyi county, Guangdong province, Lee Yue-hong graduated from the Guangzhou University and the Northcote College of Education in Hong Kong. He devoted his career to teaching. He joined the Lingnan Art Studio in 1951 to study painting with Chao. In 1958, he was one of the four students who exhibited their works jointly at St John’s Cathedral. The other three were Lee Man-shek, Ho Tick-on, and Ou Ho-nien. In 1960 Lee was a member of the planning committee for the founding of the Today’s Art Association, a society formed mainly by Chao's students. He participated in the association's first four annual shows.

The Lingnan School stresses the importance of direct observation of nature in still life painting. Lee carries this out faithfully in practice. He has travelled widely to see various landscapes and architecture, and made detailed study of plants, birds and animals which were the objects of his paintings. In his persevering spirit, his paintings are created under a series of themes and each of which contains more than 100 works, reflecting his determination to explore and represent every facet and minute variation of the subject. In the creation of his "Huangshan Landscapes" series, he made several trips to the famous and the less well-known scenic spots of the mountain to observe the effects of change of weather and the seasons. He captured his observations in large quantities of sketches for later painting. Thus his works truly represented the many faces of Huangshan, the peaks, the trees, the waterfalls, the clouds, from different viewpoints, seen from afar, from below and sometimes in close-up.

He paints animals, birds and flowers with the same discerning attitude. His "Eagle" series graphically depicts many kinds of preying birds such as hawks, eagles, ospreys, vultures, and the owl. Apart from showing them in various poses of preying and ferocity, Lee also describes the characteristics and habitat of each species in the inscription. The "Fowls" series celebrating the year of Rooster (2005) shows a similar vast array of birds, from the usual house fowl of cockerel and hen to the pheasant and turkey.

This exhibition features a selection of paintings from the "A Hundred Birds" series showing a wide variety of birds which are almost physiologically accurate in rendering of colour and proportions, yet they are also finely composed bird-and-flower paintings. His paintings are often accompanied by verses written in calligraphy to highlight the theme or the meaning of the painting.

Lee also devotes time to art education. He was a member of the Art Panel of the Education Department from 1958 to 1959. He founded his own studio, the Chinese Art Academy, and taught from 1958. He taught in Macao's University of East Asia and the University of Macau from 1987 until his retirement. Even after his retirement, he continues to travel weekly between Hong Kong and Macao to teach his students. He has recently held exhibitions and taught in Dandong in northeastern China as an effort to bring the Lingnan School into a new frontier.

To tie-in with the exhibition, a demonstration entitled "A Life Bonded to Water and Mountain" will be held on February 11, 2009, at 3pm at the museum. Lee will demonstrate Chinese ink painting skills and also share his journey on art creation. Conducted in Cantonese, admission to the event is free and 50 seats will be available on a first-come-first-served basis. For details and reservation of seats, please contact the Education Team of the museum on 2180 8260.

Located at 1 Man Lam Road, Sha Tin, the Heritage Museum opens from 10am to 6pm from Monday to Saturday, and from 10am to 7pm on Sundays and public holidays. On Christmas Eve and Chinese New Year's Eve, the museum will close at 5pm. It is closed on Tuesdays (except public holidays) and the first two days of Chinese New Year. Admission is $10, with a half-price concession for senior citizens aged 60 or above, people with disabilities and full-time students. Admission is free on Wednesdays.

Paid car parking is available at the Heritage Museum. Those who prefer to use public transport may take the MTR Ma On Shan Line and get off at the Che Kung Temple Station, which is within three minutes' walk of the museum.

For enquiries, call 2180 8188. For details of the exhibition, visit the Heritage Museum's website at

Heritage Museum shows Chinese paintings by Lee Yue-hong
Heritage Museum shows Chinese paintings by Lee Yue-hong

Source: GovHK (