Three-Inch Golden Lotuses, Chinese Woman’s Bound Feet in the Feudal Society

Jiasui Zhu

As an editor, I have compiled a large number of news and reported on a variety of art exhibitions for over a decade.  There is a special female artist whose paintings have left a deep imprint upon my soul.  Her bold use of bright colors–ocean blue and carmine red—reflects the characteristics of Chinese folklore arts.  Selection of Double Happiness character hanging on the wall and casually placed flowery cloth bundle on a console form an iconic backdrop.  Whereas the most attraction comes from a pair of delicate lotus feet shoes, which captivates the audience’s attention right away… The painter is Shen Chunxia (沈春霞)。 These very Chinese elements are also my impressions about my motherland, my childhood experiences, my memories of hometown, and the colors stuck in my mind.  I remember seeing my auntie’s same hairdo–a tidy and shiny hair bun fixed on top of her head.  She also wore on her wrists large rattling silver bracelets.  Behind her, I walked on my heels, mimicking her bound feet walking with pleasant kada rhythm.   Auntie’s storytelling at night was most entrancing.  She said that female warrior Mulan dressed like a man.  She joined the army in place of her aging father to fight the enemy.  She was only discovered to be a girl when at night she took off her boots, revealing female’s red socks and her bound feet.  Since then having left behind my hometown for school and work, I do not remember many detailed stories.  But that three-inch Golden Lotus feet which offered me a glimpse of China firmly stays on in my mind.

Chunxia is a master of lotus painting, a transcendental master who artistically links lotus flowers to women’s bound feet shoes.  How can she attain such a harmonious beautiful painting, many wonder, and let various subjects present a uniform emotion.

Chunxia employs a very natural method.  Under her pen, lotus flowers and lotus shoes can form a harmonious environment, and express consistent emotions.  For instance, her paintings mark the connection between delicate bound feet shoes and the traditional Chinese women who are tough and resilient.  The metaphor of lotus flowers expresses its noble character—rising out of mud without being defiled.  Its fragrance is never compromised.  Her paintings show an entity of  nature and harmony.

Personal Introduction

Shen Chunxia, a professional paintress who was born in Huai An City, Jiangsu province and grew up in Nanjing. She is a member of both Chinese Industrial Arts Society and Jiangsu Artists Association. She is also the invited painter of Chinese contemporary famous academies and Jiangsu Engraving Painting Group. She was interested in arts since she was young. However, her painting experience started at her middle age and she studied arts with the famous painter Yang Lizhou and Wang Yingchun. She also got the guide from Wang Zhong. After years of hard working, she created more than a hundred of works, including oil painting and engraving painting. Her painting focus on the composition of the picture .The theme of her creation is full of innovation and the color of her painting is quite unique. Her work combines both modern sense and imagination. Her work took part in many shows including the 2nd Comprehensive Art Show, 3rd New Artiest Show by Jiangsu Artiest Association and “May Wind in Jiangsu” Show by Nanjing Artiest Association and Jiangning Culture Association. In September,2010, she held her personal oil painting show in Jiangsu Art Gallery and personal oil painting from nature in Communication University of China, Nanjing. She was invited to the Shanghai Art Expo from 2013 to 2015. In 2014, she was invited to the 17th Beijing Art Expo(2014) in September and Beijing Invited Show (Autumn) for Famous Painters in October. In June, 2015, she was invited to Busan Art Expo in Korea and also was invited to the 21st LA Art Show will be held during 27th-30th Jan,2016 in Convention Center in Los Angeles.

shen chunxia (left 2nd) on her Art show .
shen chunxia (left 2nd) on her Art show .

Her work was warm welcomed and received high appreciations. Her published book <Shen Chunxia Painting Album> and <the World of Shen Chunxia> was focused and reported by many medias including Chinese Painting Paper, Investment Times and Collecting Paper. Her work has been collected by leaders, museums, famous company in China and the whole world.


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