Oxhill News

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South Warwickshire, England.

The Oxhill News

March 2005


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W I  Report Ė February 2005

After the business of the meeting was completed, our Guest Speaker, Mrs J Morgan was introduced.

Her subject was Chinese Brush Painting, and from the very beginning she held our interest and we were spellbound.  Whilst the demonstration was on, there was not a sound in the room except Mrs Morganís voice.  I have never heard WI so quiet.

With just a few strokes of her brush, magical pictures appeared, beautiful bamboo, exquisite flowers and fish.  It was made to look so easy, but Mrs Morgan has been studying this form of painting for 20 years and has even had the honour to go to Beijing University in China (not once but three times) to study under their current masters.

Mrs Morgan told us a little about the beginning of Chinese Brush Painting which is an extension of Chinese Calligraphy.  The ink block, brush, inkstone and paper are known as The Four Treasures, and artists treat them with great care so they can get the best use from their tools.

The paper that is used for painting on is all handmade and very thin, sometimes called rice paper (but not what would be used in cooking, not to be eaten) and made from varying materials, such as bamboo or wood bark.  The brush is held in an upright position, which is very different from the Western style, and you grind the ink block against the inkstone to make your black colour (this can range from very black to the lightest of greys depending how much water is added).

This all seems very simple but believe me, it takes time and patience.

After the demonstration, which overran by more than half an hour, we were given the opportunity to try some painting for ourselves.  Definitely not easy.  Learning to hold the brush correctly was the first difficulty.  This is a form of art that I would recommend to anyone of any age.  It is so satisfying when you get a brush stroke right.

I must admit that this was one of the best demonstrations that we have had, and if any of you get a chance to go and see someone painting in this style, please do.  It will be well worth your while.

The meeting was closed at 10 p.m.  Our next meeting will be on 2nd March.

Donít forget that Keep Fit will be in the Village Hall on Thursdays at 10.30 a.m.  All welcome.

Jackie Batchelor

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Last modified: February 27, 2005