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Denver Art Museum
Exhibition Second rotation

Wu Hufan (1894-1968), Monastery in the Autumn Mountains, 1950. Hanging scroll; ink and color on paper 40 5/8 x 22 3/4 in (103.19 x 57.79 cm.) Lent to the Denver Art Museum by Robert and Lisa Kessler

The second rotation of Fantastic Brush: Twentieth-Century Chinese Ink Art from the Robert and Lisa Kessler Collection is now on view.

The 23 ink paintings featured in the exhibition are lent by the Denver-based collectors Mr. and Mrs. Kessler. Works on view showcase some of the most important artists in twentieth-century China, including Zhang Daqian, Qi Baishi, Xu Beihong, Wu Changshuo, and Wu Guanzhong. Some traveled to Europe or to Japan to study Japanese and Western art, and others never went abroad. All were well versed in traditional Chinese ink art and found their own unique interpretation of what it means to produce ink art in the twentieth century.

After 1949 and the establishment of the communist government some artists left mainland China, moving to Hong Kong, Taiwan, and elsewhere. For those who stayed on the mainland, their art and lives were significantly altered by the political climate and reflected their response to the larger socioeconomic seismic shifts they witnessed during their lifetime.