Peasant Painting Huxian County Xian
Huxian County was named the County of Painting by Ministry of Culture in 1988. It is located 40 km (about 25 miles) southwest of Xian City, Bordering Qinling Mountain to the south and the Wei River to the north, Huxian County boasts splendid landscapes and a long history.
The style is said to have originated in the late 1950s when Hu County peasants who were building a new reservoir began painting pictures of the work in progress in order to record the work and to inspire themselves to work better. Huxian peasants continued to paint, and during China's 1966-1976 Cultural Revolution their work was shown abroad to prove to the outside world that common, ordinary workers could produce works of art. Ordinary life was the subject of these paintings, and work was often the focus.
Originated from the traditional folk arts such as paper cutting, embroidering and so on, at that time, most paintings were focused on work. Now, peasants portray almost every aspect in their daily life. Feeding livestock, children playing, local operas, village traditions, ducks swimming, elders playing Chinese chess, Festivals, parades, the harvest, music, farm animals, winter, kitchen work, and so on are all wonderful topics for painting. Some paintings are bold and unconstrained; some are strong and impassioned, while yet others are ornate and elegant. All of them have a naive charm, clear and full of the feeling of folk life.
After more than fifty years, there are over 2,000 painters now resident in the county. Many famous painters such as Liu Zhide, Liu Zhigui, Fan Zhihua, Wang Wenji and Luo Zhijian have been invited by foreign countries to visit and give lectures. Some of these painters have even published books abroad. Many masterpieces have been exhibited in more than 60 countries. Many of them have been collected by national and international art museums, galleries and individuals.
The Gallery of Farmers' Paintings from Huxian County is located at the No.17 building of Kaiyuan Group in Xian East Hi-tech zone. With an exhibition area of 1200 square meters, the gallery has more than 1000 paintings on displaying. Visitors can appreciate a great selection of Peasant Painting, enjoy the performance of folk artists, enjoy the demonstration of the artist and even try to paint for you yourself.