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Chinese artist's foreign fame after death


13:37, August 29, 2012

An exhibition of the works of little-known Chinese artist, Lo Yuao, has opened in Buenos Aires. He came to art late in life and merged influences from his homeland with those of his adopted country. Recognition of his talent and the difficult conditions under which he worked is coming now, five years after his death. Our correspondent Daniel Schweimler went to the inauguration to find a remarkable story.

If Lo Yuao could see this now, an exhibition dedicated to his later works, he might feel the struggle was worthwhile. He never sought recognition while he was alive, he just wanted to paint - merging influences from his home in southern China’s Guangdong province with those of his adopted country.

Gustavo Ng, Editor, Dang Dai Magazine said, "On the first look it’s absolutely Chinese. But on a closer look there is some treatment of water, and the relationship between water and man, it includes the Argentinian part of the river where he grew up."

He arrived in Argentina in 1954 as part of a Chinese crew building a textile factory. When the construction was done he stayed on, working as a cook and a photographer - but always painting. He was taught but no-one is sure by whom.

Gustavo Ng, Editor, Dang Dai Magazine said, "The cultural relationship between Argentina and China is about to exist. It really does not exist. The main relation is economic and the cultural will come but not yet. When it comes this will be a good point because this is not only Chinese painting, it is Chinese painting made in Argentina. It’s quite unique."

Lo Yuao was poor and couldn’t afford the rice paper he needed to paint on so he made do these works all done on absorbent kitchen towels.

Daniel Schweimler, Buenos Aires said, "China and Argentina are about as distant from one another as it’s possible to be on this earth. But Lo Yuao found much in common between the two countries and portrayed it in his art now being recognized several years after his death.

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