Professor Shang Tao
Shang Tao:“Bird-and-flower painting depicts flowers, birds, insects, and fish to please viewers, grant them the enjoyment of beauty, inconspicuously raise their level of aesthetic awareness and taste, and influence and refine their character and spirit.
Professor, doctoral student adviser, and Curator of the Art Museum at the Central Academy of Fine Arts Wang Huangsheng : Li Kuchen once said Shang Tao is “raw,” but he added, “Rawness is hard to find. Huang Tingjian pursued it his entire life without achieving it.” Shang Tao also calls himself “simple,” it can be said to be a “rawness” of “great learning,” a classical, scholarly rawness.The huge fish and large birds, giant leaves and big flowers, pandas and toads, even birds of prey, that flow from his brush all seem, in a way, approachable and adorable. Shang Tao's belief in art is: Art should be adorable. The word “adorable” itself evokes the innocence of childhood and doting benevolence; it also connotes perseverance in living.
Shang Tao, renowned ink wash painter and calligrapher, was born in Beijing in 1938. He graduated from the High School of Fine Arts in 1957, and in 1964, he graduated from the School of Chinese Painting, Central Academy of Fine Arts. He is a student of contemporary masters such as Le Keran, Jiang Zhaohe, Li Kuchen, and Yeh Qian. Shang Tao is a founding board member of the Chinese Painting Association, and has been a Professor at the Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts and a graduate adviser to calligraphy and engraving students. He is currently a National A-level Artist.
His works The South Sea, Midsummer, Magnanimity, Gold Bowl, and Heavenly Aroma have been exhibited at the 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, and 10th National Fine Art Exhibition, respectively. In particular, Magnanimity won the Exhibition Award, the highest award at the Distinguished Works Exhibition of the 8th National Fine Art Exhibition; and Gold Bowl won the Bronze Prize at the Distinguished Works Exhibition of the 9th National Fine Art Exhibition. His Comfort and Ease was selected for the National Art Academies Biennial and won the highest Academic Award. Beautiful Enough to Overthrow a Kingdom, Blue Bird, and Mount Jiugao were selected for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd National Chinese Painting Exhibition, respectively; in particular, Magnificent Beauty won the Bronze Prize at the 1st National Chinese Painting Exhibition. His work Midsummer participated in the 1987 Algiers-Assembling World Culture exhibition, winning the Gold Prize. Magnificent Beauty wins the Gold Prize at the 1995 Sino-Japanese Modern Ink Wash Painting Exchange Exhibition. Blooming was selected for the 2001 Exhibition on China in a Century. Magnanimity was praised as one of the “Fifty Classic Works in Fifty Years of the Guangdong Artists Association” and is in the collection of the Guangdong Museum of Art.
Shang Tao has held solo exhibitions in Toronto, New York, Beijing, and Guangzhou, and his works have been collected by the State Council, the National Art Museum of China, the Guangdong Museum of Art, the National Library of China, the Guangzhou Art Museum, and the Australian Museum.