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History in the Making: Sketches for iconic paintings on view at Hadrien de Montferrand Gallery
Zhong Han, Sketch for “Crossing the Yellow River Eastward”, 1977. Charcoal on on Paper, 35.5 x 79.5 cm., 14 x 31.3 in. Photo: Courtesy Hadrien de Montferrand Gallery.

BEIJING.- Hadrien de Montferrand Gallery presents an exhibition of sketches for iconic historical paintings by Chinese artists collected by Chinese National Museums. The exhibition offers a new insight on China contemporary Art’s pioneers artists, revealing to the public for the first time drawings created between the 1950’s and the 1980’s; sketches for major works of China’s 20th century Art history.

The show presents preparatory drawings for Chinese historical paintings. These works are part of China’s prestigious institutions collections. They are both artistical and historical landmarks of the “New China”. Lin Gang’s “Meeting at Jinggang Mountain”, or Zhong Han’s “Yan’An Riverside” are considered one of the National Museum of China’s finest artworks. They have served as historical teaching material for more than 50 years. Along with them, are presented sketches for works belonging to the National Museum’s permanent exhibitions: “The Road of Rejuvenation” and “Masterpieces of Modern Chinese Fine Arts” such as the iconic Zhan Jianjun masterpiece, “The Five Heroes of Langya Mountain”.

Artists Featured (by alphabetical order): Cai Liang, Dong Xiwen, Jin Zhilin, Lin Gang, Quan Shanshi, Ren Mengzhang, Sun Zixi, Xiao Feng, Yin Rongsheng, Zhan Jianjun, and Zhong Han.

The Hadrien de Montferrand Gallery is the first gallery in China entirely dedicated to original works on paper. Hadrien de Montferrand Gallery has chosen to specialize in this undeveloped field of contemporary Art offering international Art collectors and amateurs alike established and emerging creators’ works in pencil, ink, gouache, felt, charcoal, watercolor and any other medium used on paper.

Hadrien de Montferrand has long served as a bridge between the Art worlds of China and Europe. His more than seven years at various auction houses and Art institutions included roles as marketing director for ARTCURIAL, the largest French auction house, and Ullens Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing. Hadrien has lived and worked in China for more than four years, splitting his time between Beijing and Shanghai.

His passion for works of Art on paper stems from their affordability, honesty and lack of pretence. “You cannot lie with a drawing,” says Hadrien. “It is either good or it is bad.”

An entrepreneur to the core, Laurent Dassault helped to found Arquana, continental Europe’s leading horse auction house, in 2006. His entrepreneurial spirit extends to his charitable activities as well. Laurent serves as the administrator of the “Friends of Pompidou Museum’s Association” in Paris, and heads the development committee for auction house, ARTCURIAL.

Himself an Art collector, Laurent has expressed great support for Hadrien’s initiative in China. “When an economic zone develops, creativity always follows,” he argues. “China’s artists are the 21st century’s great creators. It’s a pleasure to be a part of this ambitious and thoroughly original project.”

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