Lot 034

b. China, 1917 – d. Kuala Lumpur, 1987

BOATING 一叶图, 1979

Inscribed in Chinese with seal (lower left)
Ink and colour on rice paper
60cm x 40.5cm

Private Collection, Kuala Lumpur.

Pine Studio Collection of Huang Yao’s Paintings,
Pine Studio, Kuala Lumpur, 2013; illustrated on page 75.
Rosa Sinesis, Centre for Malaysian Chinese Studies Berhad (Formerly known as Huazi Resource & Research Centre
Berhad), Kuala Lumpur, September 2000; illustrated on
back cover of magazine.
Huang Yao Memorial and Retrospective exhibition catalogue, Galeri MIA, Eastern Resource Centre; illustrated on page 16.

ESTIMATE  RM 10,000 - 15,000

Throughout an illustrious career as a cartoonist, scholar and painter, Huang Yao had produced diverse collections of artwork from his travels depicting local landscapes and human figures in various styles namely: Bai miao, a technique of drawing fine outlines of a figure using Chinese brush; Yibihua, one stroke painting which entails the main subject completed in a single brush stroke; Tu’anhua, a stylised painting of nature or animals; Wenzihua, Huang Yao’s innovative way of depicting ancient Chinese characters through his years of research in Chinese philology; and Ziyouhua, the freedom to paint expressively resulting in abstract works unlike anything produced by other Chinese artists at the time of creation, circa 1970s.

Boating is derived from Huang Yao’s Nanyang series, a body of work consisting of romantic scenes from the Southern Seas, completed in the late 1970s. He displayed masterful calligraphic strokes evident in his paintings. Depicted here is a female figure rowing a boat in a lake, cleverly composed by the placement of the trees. Executed in an array of ink play, long and short lines are marked freely shaping the branches of the trees. The vigour and boldness of his brushstrokes is complemented by the subtle washes of blue and brown hues. Huang Yao’s ancestor can be traced to Huang Xiang, a filial son of the Eastern Han Dynasty and through his father, Huang Hanzhong, he was taught the traditional Chinese art of calligraphy, painting, classical literature, philology, history and philosophy. He was raised in an environment that strongly appreciates arts and culture. In 1935, Huang Yao became Art Editor of the Shanghai Post and drew a huge following with his cartoon character, Niubizi, which had also become his nom de plume, from 1934 to 1956. He had written and published numerous educational books namely A Chinese Soldier (1941) for the army during the war in China, Ten Talks on Niubizi for art classes in schools which was later translated into Malay language as Eight Talks on Niubizi, Chongqing in Cartoon (1943) and many more.

Return To Innocence: Huang Yao’s Painting of Happy Children,
Dr. Tan May Ling.
Rediscovered Talent, Huang Yao: Cartoonist/Scholar/Painter
, Shanghai Art Museum, 2011.