Cheng Mians powerful Bloody Massacre series of traumatized figures is a powerful condemnation of the horrific Japanese massacre of Nanjing in 1937. In using the woodcut, Cheng unconsciously invokes the style of Kathe Kollwitz whose works were introduced into China in the 1930s by the great Lu Xun, as a model for Chinese artists seeking to make their own political and social comments.
Cheng Mian had been in Beijing, exiled from the Central Arts Academy to Nanjing (probably during the cultural revolution). He is better known as an oil painter, but in terms of his print oeuvre, this series is regarded as his greatest (although it was politically criticized).
People's Republic 1949 - → China
55.6 x 69.2 cm image; 54.7 x 70.3 cm sheet
Signature & date
Signed and dated l.r., in Chinese, pencil "Cheng Mian 1985 Nanjing".
Not on display
© Cheng Mian
Shown in 1 exhibition
The People's Progress 20th Century Chinese Woodcuts, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 26 Oct 1996–15 Dec 1996
Referenced in 1 publication
Jackie Menzies, The People's Progress 20th Century Chinese Woodcuts, Sydney, 1996, 18.