Lin Fengmian's chronology

1900    Born in Meixian, Guangdong province. Given name Shaoqiong. He later adopted the alias Fengming.

1907 Learned Chinese painting from his father and copied the Manual of the Mustard Seed Garden.

1908 First came to notice when his painting, Pine and Crane, was purchased by a merchant.

1919 After graduating from middle school, went to Shanghai with Lin Wenzheng to take part in a work-study in France program.

1920 Worked as a signboard painter in Marseilles. Studied French and sketching in his spare time. After studying at the l'Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Dijon for six months, he entered the l'Ecole Nationale Supérieur des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He also studied drawing and oil painting at the Cormon art studio. Changed his name to Fengmian.

1922    His oil painting Autumn was exhibited at the `Salon d'Automne'. Travelled to Berlin with Lin Wenzheng.

1923    One-man exhibition of large oil paintings in Berlin.

1924 Returned to Paris with Roda von Steiner whom he married. Exhibited 42 paintings in the `Exhibition of Traditional and Modern Chinese Art'. His wife died after a serious illness. His oil paintings Groping and Desire for Life were exhibited at `Salon d'Automne'.

1925 Became an art teacher and married Alice Vattant

1926 Appointed the director of the Beiping Institute of the Arts upon Cai Yuanpei's recommendation. Served there as the Dean of Academic Studies and Head of the Department of Western Painting. Exhibited over a hundred works painted in Europe in a one-man exhibition at the Beiping Institute.

1927    Appointed Co-ordinator-in-chief of the Commission for Art Education in Nanjing.

1928 Exhibited at the `First Art Exhibition' in Nanjing. Founded the National Academy of Art in Hangzhou (later known as the China Academy of Art), serving as its director. Initiated the Association for Art Movements in China to promote art.

1929    Exhibited 16 paintings in the `First exhibition of the Association' for Art Movements in China' held in Shanghai.

1935    Published New Discourse on Chinese Painting, containing nine articles written between 1926 and 1934.

1936    Selected 15 articles translated from French journals for publication in World Art in 1935.

1937 With the outbreak of Sino-Japanese War, Lin fled with staff and students of the West Lake Institute to Jiangxi. He took with him only his Chinese paintings; the oil paintings left behind were destroyed by the Japanese. Exhibited at the 'Second National Art Exhibition' in Nanjing. One-man exhibition at the University of Hong Kong of over a hundred works.

1938    Left the National Academy of Art in Hangzhou. Travelled to Shanghai.

1940    Exhibited at the Fung Ping Shan Library, the University of Hong Kong.

1941   Studied and painted a large number of Chinese paintings.

1945   Exhibited at the `Fourth National Art Exhibition' in Chongqing.

1946   Exhibited at the 'Second Joint Exhibition of Contemporary Painting' and at the 'Exhibition of Contemporary Chinese Painting' in Paris.

1952    Moved to Shanghai. Became interested in Chinese opera and began to depict opera figures.

1954    Elected Vice-Chairman of the Eastern China Artists' Association and member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, Shanghai.

1956    Wife and daughter emigrated to Brazil.

1957    Paintings of Lin Fengmian was published by People's Fine Arts Publishing House, Beijing. The Paintings of Impressionists was published in the following year.

1960      Elected Vice-Chairman of the Chinese Artists' Association, Shanghai Division.

1961     Exhibited 70 paintings at the Shanghai Art Museum and at the gallery of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing.

1964    Held one-man exhibition at City Hall, Hong Kong.

1967    Lin was criticized during the Cultural Revolution. Some of his paintings were damaged.

1977    Emigrated to Hong Kong.

1979    Held one-man exhibition organized by the Shanghai Artists' Association. Paintings of Lin Fengmian was published by People's Fine Arts Publishing House, Shanghai.

1988    Held one-man exhibition at the Shanghai Art Museum, jointly organized by the Cultural Bureau of Shanghai, Shanghai Artists' Association and Shanghai Painting Association.

1989    Held 90th birthday retrospective exhibition at the National Museum of History, Taipei and one-man exhibition at the China National Art Museum, Beijing. 1991          Died in Hong Kong.


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