This Artist Spotlight is presented by Worcester Magazine in partnership with ArtsWorcester. Since 1979, ArtsWorcester has exhibited and advanced the work of this region’s contemporary artists. Its exhibitions and educational events are open and free to all. Learn more at www.artsworcester.org.
Now living in Grafton, Xiang Li is an internationally acclaimed artist who specialized in the reproduction and restoration of ancient Chinese paintings at the Forbidden City of Beijing, China, where she worked as a Master Artist for 37 years. She has earned high praise from top art scholars and even the Last Emperor’s brother, Pu Jie, who said that she is “one of the most extraordinary artists of our time.” Li was first recognized in 1985 after spending five years creating the first complete collection, featuring 413 scenes from the Chinese classic novel, “Dream of the Red Chamber.” This collection was featured at the Grand View Garden in Beijing for 20 years (1985-2005).
Following “Dream of the Red Chamber,” Li completed a sequel collection, the breathtaking “100 Flower Goddesses,” which was recognized and signed by the best-known Chinese calligraphers and artists from the 20th century, including Dong Shouping, Fan Zeng, Zhou Ruchang, Pu Jie.
In 2014, Li began working on the most artistically and technically challenging collection “Chinese Empresses.” This collection features 120 empresses from Chinese history. These women have impacted and shaped the history of China, yet there were limited portraits or other art forms dedicated to them. Li wants to fill the gap and help us learn more about women in ancient history.