Graduate Students Assist with Exhibition of Chinese Art

Posted: September 10, 2015 at 5:07 pm

Haolin Lei and Jingwei Li, graduate students in George Mason University’s Arts Management program, assisted with the curation, installation, and marketing of the exhibition, Ageless Chinese Art: A Virginia Scholar’s Collection. The exhibition opens Thursday, September 10, 2015, on the Fairfax campus.

George Mason University’s School of Art and the Confucius Institute present:

Ageless Chinese Art:  A Virginia Scholar’s Collection

of Chinese Calligraphy and Paintings

Exhibition Dates: Sept. 10 to Oct. 23, 2015

Panel Discussion and Public Reception: Thursday, Sept. 10 at 5:00–7:30 p.m.

Global Language Perspectives Panel Discussion: Oct. 22 at 12:00–1:00 p.m.

Location: Fine Arts Gallery, Art & Design Building, Fairfax Campus

Hours: 12 p.m. – 4 p.m

Contact: Donald Russell, University Curator:, 202-213-6272

The exhibition Chinese Calligraphy and Painting from 1290 to 2000 will take place at George Mason University’s School of Art Gallery from Sept. 1 to Oct. 23, 2015, with an opening reception on Sept. 10 at 6 p.m. Works in the exhibition, from the collection of Dr. Chi Wang, will introduce viewers to the art, history and philosophical insights offered by China’s most valued visual art, which has evolved continuously over thousands of years.

Chinese pictographs first appeared around 1200 B.C. and are thought to be related to oracles. These images were simplified but recognizable depictions of humans, trees, fish, and other objects from the natural environment. These rebus-like drawings evolved visually over time to become ideograms, with the original imagery becoming increasingly abstract. Traces of the original images can often still be identified and can serve as a memory trigger when learning to write Chinese. Traditionally, people in China were trained in classic forms of calligraphy and this skill is still an integral part of Chinese education. The spiritual traditions of Taoism and Confucianism are also central to an understanding and appreciation of calligraphy.

Selections in the exhibition include Chinese paintings and calligraphic scrolls that Dr. Chi Wang has collected over the past 60 years. Dating from ancient time to the 20th century, exhibited artworks feature various forms and techniques, script styles, and schools of Chinese calligraphy. Many works combine naturalistic landscapes and animals with calligraphic notations.

About Dr. Chi Wang

Dr. Chi Wang is the former head of the Chinese Division of the Library of Congress from 1956 to 2004. He has also been a professor of history at Georgetown University. In 1996, Dr. Wang co-founded the US-China Policy Foundation, where he currently serves as Co-chair and President. Throughout his career, Dr. Wang has bolstered understanding and relations between the US and China by engaging in different diplomatic activities, promoting bilateral understanding through education and dialogues, producing public television talk shows, and writings in numerous publications.

About the Confucius Institute at Mason

The Confucius Institute at Mason is a partnership between George Mason University, Confucius Institute Headquarters and Beijing Language and Culture University. The Institute offers educational programs about Chinese language and culture to schools, community organizations, interested individuals, and businesses.

The Fine Arts Gallery is located in the Art and Design Building on the Fairfax Campus of George Mason University, and is open Monday through Friday, 12:00 – 4:00 p.m. Admission is FREE and open to the public.