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YU

Cheng

Yao

余承堯

1898-1993

余承堯是中國現代藝壇上的一位傳奇人物。在中國繪畫史上,像余承堯這樣的藝術生涯,可以說再也找不到一個相似的例子。余承堯大半生過著隱士一般的生活,罕為人知,一直到老年才登上藝壇的舞台,並且在生命的最後數年間綻放出光芒,成為當代最重要的中國當代畫家之一。


余承堯是在卸下國民黨軍隊陸軍中將職務後,1954年(五十六歲)才開始了他在書法和繪畫上的創作。無論書法或繪畫方面,余先生皆是無師自通。余先生一心從是對於藝術以及故鄉福建的古老音樂「南管音樂」的深入研究,同時開始提筆進行水墨畫的創作。在三十多年的軍旅生涯中,他走遍了中國的千山萬水。退伍不久,適逢國民政府遷移到台灣,憑著記憶,所畫的題材全都是他多年不斷回憶冥想的意象,也就是在他從一名步兵漸漸地晉升至中將的軍旅生涯中,背著補給參與無數的軍事行動,穿越千山萬嶺時所觀察到的那些高峻大理石山巒和遠處的景象。


The artistic career of Yu Cheng-Yao is a phenomenon in modern Chinese art. In the history of Chinese painting there has been no parallel to his development. He came to the scene late in his life, and finally blossomed into one of the most important Chinese painters of contemporary art in the last several years of his life.
 

In 1954, at the age of 56, Yu Cheng-Yao began his work in painting and calligraphy as a serious hobby after he retired from the Nationalist armies where he had served as a General. He had had no formal training in either painting or calligraphy, yet he immersed himself in the arts while researching the history of Nan-kuan Southern Music, an ancient genre born in his native province of Fujian. During the thirty years in the military he had climbed over most of China's majestic mountains both in the north and the south. At the time of his release, he followed the government to Taiwan and years later he painted what had been etched indelibly in his mind, over the years of repeated spiritual homecomings, the granite peaks and distant vistas experienced while clambering over the myriad ridges, with provisions strapped to his back, during one or the other of the seemingly endless series of military campaigns he had served, first as foot soldier, rising up gradually through the ranks, finally reaching the rank of a General.