SFSU Public Affairs Press ReleasePublished by the Public Affairs Office at San Francisco State University, Diag Center.
Contact: Ariane Bicho
phone: (415) 338-1442
Retrospective Jointly Sponsored by the Chinese Historical Society of
America & Chinese American National Museum and San Francisco State
Universityıs College of Creative Arts
GRAND OPENING WEEKEND: NOVEMBER 17 & 18; SHOW CLOSES FEBRUARY 29, 2002
SAN FRANCISCO--Considered the most famous Chinese in mid-century America,
watercolor master Dong Kingman is the subject of a retrospective exhibition,
Dong Kingman in San Francisco, opening Saturday, November 17, 2001 at the
Chinese Historical Society of America & Chinese American National Museum,
San Francisco. Jointly sponsored by San Francisco State Universityıs
College of Creative Arts, the highly focused exhibition features 25
watercolors of San Francisco scenes painted between 1935 and the
mid-eighties. Viewers can see the development of the artistıs influential
style and marvel at the ease in which he fused traditional Chinese and
modern Western techniques.
Dong Kingman in San Francisco seeks, in part, to demonstrate Mr. Kingman's
brilliant achievements. "Kingman's reputation as 'Americaıs favorite
watercolorist' and his regular mention in Herb Caenıs column almost eclipsed
his reputation as a serious painter for a time," says Harry S. Parker III,
director of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. "As we look again at
these early examples of Kingman's work, we can appreciate anew his fresh
vision and skillful ability to capture the Bay Area"s weather, light and
atmosphere." Principal organizer and photographer Irene Poon and
Co-curator and SFSU Professor and painter Mark Johnson add, "Kingman's
earlier work circa 1960--its bright mood and bravura--almost suggest Wayne
Thiebaud's imagery of San Franciscoıs street scenes a few decades later."
Dong Kingman (1911-2000) is recognized as one of the premier watercolor
masters in America and a pioneer of the California school of painting. Born
in Oakland, California as Dong Moy Shu, Mr. Kingman returned to Hong Kong
with his family at age five. There, at the Lingnan School, he studied
painting with a Paris-trained teacher. When he returned to
Oakland in 1929, he already excelled at calligraphy and watercolor painting;
however, he enrolled at a local art school to further his studies. A solo
exhibition in San Francisco in 1936 elevated him to national recognition.
In the decades that followed, Mr. Kingman became the recipient of every
major award for watercolors, including two Guggenheim Fellowships
(1942/1943), a Metropolitan Museum of Art Award (1975) and the American
Watercolor Societyıs Dolphin Medal (1987). Dong Kingman's work is
represented in the permanent collections of 50 museums and universities,
including the M.H. de Young Memorial Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art,
Whitney Museum, Museum of Modern Art, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Hirshhorn
Museum, Art Institute of Chicago and Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.
Dong Kingman in San Francisco began as a luncheon conversation with the late
Helena and Dong Kingman in 1997. It features works from the collections of
the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
and individual collectors.
The exhibition is made possible by San Francisco Hotel Tax/Grants for the
Arts, the New York Life Insurance Company, Square 2 and anonymous donors.
ADMISSION AND INFORMATION Admission to Dong Kingman in San Francisco is adults $3, students with ID and seniors $2, children 6-17 years old $1. Admission is free for museum members and children 5 and under and on the first Thursday of each month. Museum hours are Tuesday through Friday, 11 am to 4 pm; Saturdays & Sundays noon to 4 pm; closed Mondays. The Chinese Historical Society & Chinese American National Museum is located at 965 Clay Street, at Powell Street, San Francisco. For more information, please call the museum at 415/ 391-1188.
SFSU, 1600 Holloway Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94132
Last modified April 24, 2007, by Office of Public Affairs