Asian Pacific Art Institute of America


  The Enlightenment of Mu Jiashan  Phenomenon to Chinese Art 


By Liang  Yongling

the director of Chinese calligrapher association and

the director of literature department of People’s Daily overseas.


If a simple sentence can be used to describe a painter, the painter will be forgotten simply by the history. In my eyes, Mu Jiashan  is not a simple painter. It is generally accepted that if it is not one, then it is the other, while Mu Jiashan  phenomenon is a great challenge to the traditional way of thinking. Hence, it’s a difficult to judge his artwork in a short essay.

Reviewing the Chinese Modern and contemporary artworks, we can find the Chinese painters having western painting background, such as Lin Fengmian and Wu Guanzhong, shows western style dimly in their work, while the painters having traditional Chinese Painting, such as Huang Binhong, follow the track of traditional Chinese Painting. These two styles are the mainstream of the contemporary Chinese Painting. With the development of reform and opening, the variability of aesthetics and the opening of mind, the atmosphere of the invalid attempt and the fickle mind covers the Chinese Painting field, which leads to two new trends: faddish trend and traditional trend. Although these two trends are different from each other: the former is glaring in style and the latter is striking in technique, they also have one common point, i.e., the weakerness of innovation, which makes the future of Chinese painting bleak. Under such background, the appearance of artwork by Mu Jiashan  gave us a pleasant surprise and attracted much attention. Mu Jiashan is a special painter who always shows his own idea in his work. Comparing his work with those of other Chinese painters, we feel the style is different but his work inherits the spirit of Chinese painting. If we chase novelty just for difference, that’s the bad choice between fashion and tradition. The most important thing is to follow the sign of past master and achieve much greater achievement. It is obvious that the choice of Mu Jiashan belongs to the latter.Because of this reason, it is a challenge for us to enjoy his artwork. His artworks, such as    “Serenade of the Trees and Clouds” ,  “Song of Nature”, “ Clouds Playing with Waterfall”and “Little Boats Glide Past 1,000 Mountains , invite us to enter into a world of south place and north style, massiness and elegance, peace and harmony. This is an attracting world full of far-reaching beauty beyond the form and technique.

His new artwork of grand canyon series, such as  “Mountains Turn Green ”(Spring),  “ Waterfall Laughs at the Lazy Cloud  ”(Summer) , Autum in The Grand Canyon”(Autum) ,“The Song of the Grand Canyon”(Winter)  and “Walking alone in the Big Mountains”,Autumn Wind Makes People More Home Sick”, “ Waterfall Temple”, “Clear Spring Running on The Rocks”, “Lazy Falls”, “Waterfall Elevates the View”, still follows and conveys the traditional Chinese culture. They also shows modern style in these work.

Although many literature critics said that the more national, the more world-wide, I think it is not always true. The fact shows that the artwork of Jiashan Mu have generated effects on the world painting. It is strange and surprising, but it is also can not be defied. The longer the time he stays in America, the more beautiful the Chinese culture he will find. Maybe this is just the enlightenment of Jiashan Mu phenomenon to Chinese art. 



January 6th, 2008

Review Articles about APAIA and Mu Jiashan