The Tufts University Art Gallery at the Shirley and Alex Aidekman Arts Center proudly presents Yuan Yunsheng: Chinese Myth, Folklore & History, from September 12 through December 3, 2017. This exhibition showcases work by Yuan Yunsheng from the early 1980s, which includes the 72-foot mural commissioned for Tufts University in 1983. A public opening reception will take place on September 14 starting at 5:00 pm in the Remis Sculpture Court. An artist talk will begin at 6:00 pm.
In the winter of 1983, artist Yuan Yunsheng (b. 1937) came to the United States as an artist-in-residence at Tufts University. During his six-month stay, Yuan created the six-panel mural Two Ancient Chinese Tales – Blue + Red + Yellow = White?. The painting cycle revolves around a mythological narrative that is critical of the socio-political upheavals experienced in the People’s Republic of China under Chairman Mao Zedong (in power from 1945-76).
This mural is one of Yuan’s pivotal achievements outside of his native China, where he is renowned as a painter and teacher. Whereas the mural was originally designed for the university’s former Wessell Library, it has been on view in only fragmentary states since 1994, most recently at Tisch Library. Tufts University Art Gallery is pleased to present the mural in its entirety, newly restored, and in its original orientation for the first time in over 20 years. This exhibition also includes a selection of related paintings by Yuan from the same time period.