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Xu Wei: Art, Madness, and Persona

The late Ming artist and poet Xu Wei 徐渭 (1521-1593) is sometimes known as China’s Van Gogh: his wild ink-brush paintings, mental instability, numerous suicide attempts, and the murder of this third wife all helped to create Xu's image. However, such a view is one-dimensional. In this talk, Edward will explore the life of Xu Wei and explore the various ways he expressed himself. Xu styled himself simultaneously as a Daoist mountain hermit living in the city, an eccentric, a Confucian scholar, a murderer, a soldier, and a champion of unbridled self-expression who yet made a living by ghost-writing formulaic poems for others. Against the backdrop of Mongol and pirate invasions, Xu was a much more complex and contradictory figure.


03 AUGUST 2021 

19:30 HKT (Tuesday)

12:30 BST (Tuesday)

13:30 CEST (Tuesday)

20:30 IST (Tuesday)

15:30 UAE (Tuesday)


Dr Edward Luper


Ms Li-Chun Hu


About the speaker

Dr. Edward Luper is a specialist in Chinese Art at Bonhams, London. He studied the Chinese language (modern and classical) at SOAS before working briefly in a hotel in Sanya, Hainan, hoping to follow the footsteps of Su Dongpo. He continued with a Master's and D.Phil at Oxford University. His thesis was on the Ming dynasty artist and poet Xu Wei (1521-1593). During this time, Edward travelled, lectured, and sketched his way across China. Edward has gone on to study Chinese woodblock printing techniques at the China Academy of Art in Hangzhou and has a deep appreciation of Japanese woodblock prints. He is also an artist and illustrator and his ten-meter scroll painting on the life of Xu Wei is to be exhibited in the new Xu Wei museum in Shaoxing, Zhejiang Province. 


About the moderator

Li-Chun Hu is an independent art consultant specialising in Chinese ceramics and works of art.  She has a background in classical music and industrial design before receiving her Master's in Art Market & Appraisals in England. Li-Chun's profession takes her to international Chinese art auctions, and she continues to give advisory services to private collectors, dealers, and regional auction houses around the world. Her connoisseurship, experience, and market acumen help her source the highest quality objects for a global client base.

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