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Paintings from the Ancient City of Pingyao

Looking in Pingyao Detail Painting Seamus Berkeley

The day after arriving in Shanghai, I went with Sepi and Paul to Pingyao, an ancient walled city located two hours northwest of Shanghai by plane. Our purpose for visiting Pingyao was twofold: to attend the Pingyao International Photographic (PIP) exhibit where Sepi’s sister, Soody, was showing her work and to see a more historic view of China.

Pingyao has hosted the (PIP) for many years. Photographers come from all over China and the world to see and exhibit their work. It was fascinating to see the most modern photographic work with people from around the world set in this truly old environment. For all of us, this visit turned out to be a highlight of our time in China.

As I have written earlier, it has been my intention on this trip to focus more on painting landscapes than my usual work with portraiture. I found the people in PIngyao so appealing that I decided to work on a few pieces with them as the subject. The first of these paintings is of a fellow who I had seen several times walking through the paved streets. On this occasion he was on the side looking intently at the other people walking the streets.

‘Looking in Pingyao’, Oil on canvas, 20×16

The next scene was a woman looking out the window of a restaurant. Her distant gaze was captivating.

‘Wondering in Pingyao’, Oil on canvas, 20×16

Next: Art in Shanghai

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