Hood Quarterly, summer 2013
Xinyue Guo ’14
Fan Tchunpi, one of the most important and prolific Chinese women artists of the modern era, painted this atmospheric view of New Hampshire’s White Mountains while living with her eldest son, Meng Chi Tsen, in Brookline, Massachusetts, in the early 1960s. According to her son, Fan Tchunpi liked to drive her Volkswagen minibus, load- ed with art supplies, on long road trips around New England while searching for suit- able subjects for her work. Mist, which lends an ethereal quality to traditional Chinese painting, is used here to soften and blur the massive rock formations, whose immensity is also diminished by the placement of oversized trees, rendered in broad brushstrokes, that dwarf the mountains in the foreground. The palette of blue, green, and white follows the traditional colors of Chinese ink painting, while the use of an aerial perspective completes the artist’s vision of a floating, mist-shrouded landscape.
The Hood has a large and distinguished collection of White Mountain landscape paintings made by American artists in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The museum is delighted to add this work to the collection, thanks to a generous donation from the artist’s three sons, to show how a painter from a different culture and artistic background can see the same mountain range and yet render it entirely differently. White Mountain Landscape will go on public display in a much-anticipated exhibition of Fan Tchunpi’s paintings and ceramics that will be on view in the Hood’s Harrington Gallery from September 7 to December 8, 2013.