Qi Baishi is a representative of the Chinese school of artists of the XX century. The artist’s real name is Qi Huang, Qi Baishi is his pseudonym. He is one of the most famous painters of modern China. He was born into a poor peasant family and lived a long interesting life (93 years). At age 28, he began to learn national painting from the famous Chinese artist Hu Qingyuan.
At the age of forty Baishi went to the provinces of China, in search of inspiration and ideas. He could not get a basic education, but at the expense of his talents and diligence he reached unprecedented heights and became a recognized master in painting, calligraphy and carving. At the age of 60, he became a professor in the Department of Painting and taught at the Peking University of Arts. The Chinese government awarded him the title of “Great Artist of the Chinese People”.
The enormous legacy left by the artist, clearly expresses the artist’s preferences. Among his subjects,
images of animals and nature predominate. The emphasis on minor details is the distinguishing feature of this author.
He achieved great heights in calligraphy. In his work, the artist used bright colors, thick ink and vigorous strokes. All the paintings are distinguished by the vividness and freshness of the transmitted material.
The most expensive painting of this artist was “Eagle, sitting on a pine.” This work was sold at auction for $ 65 million. The painting was performed in traditional Chinese ink calligraphy technique. On both sides, signatures (quatrains), printed in handwritten letters, are inscribed on both sides. The picture itself consists of three parts: a canvas (266 × 100 cm) and two scrolls on the sides (264.5 × 65.8 cm each). This work the author wrote at the age of 86 years.
The painting was donated by the artist in 1946 to the President of the Republic of China, Chiang Kai-shek, on his sixtieth anniversary. This work is recognized as the artist’s greatest work, and the second Chinese painting, which went on auction for tens of millions of dollars.
Director-General of the Department of Contemporary Chinese Painting and Calligraphy, commented on this work of his compatriot: “Qi Baishi is the most influential artist in modern and contemporary art history in China, and this work, with its high price, marks a new era in the modern Chinese art market.”