New Delhi: Two lifesize paintings of Mahatma Gandhi and a watercolour depicting Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Chinese President Xi Jinping are among the array of artworks by a group of Chinese artists on display here.
As part of celebrations to commemorate 65th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic ties between China and India, the exhibition of artworks was unveiled late last evening. Chinese ambassador Le Yucheng hosted a dinner where artistes from China gave a musical performance.
A total of 80 works by 18 artists are being showcased at the "Exhibition of Fine Arts of Contemporary China" .
"We have brought here various styles of Chinese artwork that include watercolours, ink, oil on canvas. We are here to celebrate the special relationship that the people of China and India have had for so many years," National Art Museum of China Director, Wu Wishan said with the help of a translator.
Wishan who is a noted sculptor has created the images of Gandhi included in the exhibition.
"Gandhi was a person who was full of suggestions and a man of peace. He used his entire life to benefit people and is very loved and respected by Indians. His ideals are also related to Buddhism which is very popular with people of China," Wishan said.
Speaking at the inauguration BJP MP Tarun Vijay said, "We feel grateful for the celebration of age old friendships between India and China. We are very anxious to see these paintings go to other young people are able to see wonderful paintings."
Lokesh Chandra, Chairman, India Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) who was also present pointed out the historical and ties between the two countries.
In 67 AD two monks from India Matanga and Dharmaratna came to Luoyang in China where they translated Buddhist scriptures and spread its teachings.
During the Han dynasty, white horses carried Buddhist scriptures from India to China and Xuan Zang's journey to the west in the Tang Dynasty brought Indian cuture to China. Zheng He of the Ming dynasty conducted seven explorations to visit India and Bangladesh for six times.
Buddhist influences are evident in the showcase of
paintings. One of the artworks, a watercolour in silk, depicts an Indian Buddhist monk Vajrabodhi, the founder of Sino Esoteric Buddhism, who went to China during the Tang dynasty.
The artist, vajra master Jinke Xuanlei has also created a calligraphy painting 'Dragon and elephant mandala' that features the elephant god Vinayaka at its centre.
Xuanlei has created a watercolour titled "the Everlasting Sino-Indian connection painted created in autumn of 2014 depicting Prime Minister Modi greeting Chinese President Jinping.
"The lands of China and India are covered under a jeweled canopy from heaven and supported by a golden lotus from below with rays of divine covering the mandala and lights of gold shining through," says the artist.
Another of his creations feature and ink on rice paper titled 'The dragon of the east'.
Curator of the Visual Arts Gallery, which is hosting the exhibition said, "...We have here some of the finest brushwork that we see is so typical of Chinese art. We too have a great tradition of works on paper particularly in Bengal and South India and I am hoping more people come to see the show and celebrate Indo-Chinese diplomatic relations."
The exhibition is part of 'Chinese Culture Tour to South Asia' jointly organised by China Public Diplomacy Association with the Chinese embassies in India and Bangladesh.
The show is set to continue here till April 4.