He Kongde (1925 – 2003) 何孔德
scan, paper, colour; original source: oil on canvas, 186 x 360 cm
Andrews 1994: Andrews, Julia. Painters and Politics in the People’s Republic of China, 1949-1979. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1994: p. 361, fig.123.
University of California Press Berkeley
HeidICON Image ID:
Gutian Conference, Cultural Revolution, red, smooth and luminescent, Mao’s portrait, model portrait, oil painting correction group, Cultural Revolution aesthetic, Cultural Revolution styles, young Mao, regulation
He Kongde: The Gutian Conference (He Kongde: Gutian huiyi 何孔德: 古田会议)
This oil painting by He Kongde 何孔德 (1925–2003) from the early 1970s shows a very “worldly” young Mao mingling with his comrades at the Gutian Conference 古田会议 in December 1929 at which the first policies concerning artistic production and theory were voiced, and where singing revolutionary songs became an integral part of cadre training (Wong 1984:121), and the revolutionary song The Three Main Rules of Discipline and the Eight Points for Attention 三大纪律八项注意 was endorsed as a Party song. Here, a young Mao is seen speaking to his comrades. In accordance with strict regulations as to how best to paint Mao’s portrait, his face appears strikingly smoother (touched up by an “oil painting correction group”) than the rest of the painting which is executed in rather rough brushwork.