Weng Xuesong holds his solo exhibition at Shanghai’s Minsheng Art Museum. Provided to China Daily
BEIJING, Sept. 16 — At an exhibition opening at Shanghai’s Minsheng Art Museum, the tinkling of a piano was accompanied by Chinese Kunqu Opera.
The contrast of the two different musical styles was fitting for an exhibition by Weng Xuesong, a man who has spent most of his life serving the arts, but only recently started working as a professional. “The call of destiny seems to always come accidentally,” says the 51-year-old.
Born in Chongqing, Weng has been obsessed with painting since he was a child. With inner certainty, the skinny, short kid often spent a whole day painting along the Yangtze River with his easel.
After graduating from Chong-qing Art School, Weng taught in his alma mater as a sketch teacher for almost a decade during the 1980s.
In the 1990s, Weng seized the opportunities of China’s opening-up and achieved financial success with his design studio in Beijing.
One day in 2002, Weng saw three of his old sketches in a book of China’s best sketches. He suddenly realized that for all his financial success, he had not achieved what he had set out to do artistically.
“I cannot let 80-year-old me find that I’ve failed my dreams from my 20s,” Weng recalls.
Weng terminated his businesses and returned to his art. He has been more commonly known as the artist “Xuesong”.
“I don’t think amateur means non-professional,” says Minsheng Art Museum executive director Li Feng, using great Chinese amateur poets Bai Juyi [db:内容2]