THE AMERICA CHINA OIL PAINTING ARTISTS LEAGUE
The aim of this (non-profit) organization will focus on building a creative and philosophical exchange between artists in the United States of America and those living in China . Exchange programs will be designed to allow American artists to travel to China to meet with their Chinese counterparts to share ideas, methods and techniques associated with realistic painting in oil. In turn, Chinese artists will come to America to do the same. Visiting artists from either side will conduct workshops, seminars and open forum discussion groups to advance the exchange of artistic endeavors in an amicable climate of “East meets West”. Through this organization, exhibitions will be arranged (in America and China ) to showcase the best artists that each nation has to offer with the intent to promote the resurgence of Realistic painting in oil.
The America China Oil Painting Artists League (ACOPAL) is the brainchild of two Chinese gentlemen, Mr. He Yuehua and Mr. Peng (Stephen) Ling. Though each has taken residence in America , living in the greater New York area, they have also maintained strong ties to their homeland with a special concentration in the popularity and fast growing development of Fine Art in Universities and Academies in China . Having studied the development of art in America from the nation’s birth, they became well aware of the role fine art (particularly works in oil painting) has played in the cultural enrichment of this society. China on the other hand was introduced to oil painting about 100 years ago. In this (relatively) short period, Chinese artists have made significant strides to master the techniques and methods of painting in oils. The last 20 years have seen a great surge take place in the emergence of highly accomplished Chinese artists working in oil, producing some of the finest work known the world over. Universities and (Art) Academies throughout China have focused on teaching the art of classical realism to its students. As a result, China Realism, a major (art) movement has developed and its members hold title of the highest esteem among their countrymen. Their efforts have gained recognition in other parts of the world especially in the United States . During the period that saw the rise of Realism in China , American artists were moving in the same direction. Disenchanted with Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art and the Avante Garde movements prevalent from the mid 20th century and on, artists in America pushed hard to reclaim their standing in the tradition of classical realism.
Taking these factors into account, Mr. He and Mr. Ling both realize there is one missing equation from this formula, namely, an organization that would enable fine artists from both nations – America and China – to pool together their combined resources to promote and secure the significance of classical realism. This “league of artists” would make it possible to send American artists to China to conduct workshops and seminars in the most prestigious Universities and Art Academies . Chinese artists would in turn visit America to do the same. Programs would also include discussion panels designed to open the channels of sharing art philosophies between these two great nations; create an international platform for the talented young artists in both nations to expose themselves to the world; an American Academy of Oil Painting is to be established in New York to provide a nest for talented young artists to distillate themselves under the guidance of our living masters of ACOPAL and participate in the art students exchange program with the major academies in China; Major art exhibitions would be arranged (in the USA and China) to allow better access for the general public in both nations to appreciate the top level of realistic oil painting in the world. These exhibitions will also enable art collectors as well to view and have an opportunity to purchase from selections of some of the finest art from either of the two countries. This society would be the first of its kind as no prior attempt has ever been made to merge the talents of artists from different parts of the world.
Mr. Thomas Valenti-the President of Allied Artists of America, shared a similar vision and concept for such an organization as ACOPAL. Upon meeting, Mr. Valenti, Mr. He and Mr. Ling exchanged their mutual idea and worked out the draft aims, objectives and architecture of the By-Laws and Constitution for the organization through numerous meetings and discussions. They also came up with a list of names of the most recognizable American and Chinese artists to contact for special invitation as Members into the league. The response from the invited artists was positive and immediate. Words about the ACOPAL spread (seemingly) overnight.
A formal gathering was held in the home of Tom and Noha Valenti on Saturday, January 30, 2010. The purpose of this occasion was arranged to introduce a handful of American artists to the visiting Chinese realistic artists. Nearly 30 people attended the meeting and a photographer was on hand to document the event. In the meeting, many distinguished artists Max Ginsburg, Yuqi Wang, Gary Godbee, Guo Runwen, Paul W. McCormack, Leng Jun, Jeremy Lipking, Christopher Pugliese, Pang Maokun, Michael Ruple, Thomas Valenti and Nanette Fluhr elaborated their philosophies, opinions and prospects regarding oil painting. Many questions and curiosities were exchanged and the amicable atmosphere between the artists from both sides made it clear that great things were on the horizon. Toward the latter part of the meeting, Valenti and Ling outlined the main concepts behind the ACOPAL and the advantages that such an organization would provide for all who participated. The establishment of a new society of art and artists had come to fruition and was ready to form a system of operations.
A follow up meeting took place a few days later to solidify the main body of the Executive Board and to discuss the itinerary for the first group of potential American artists for travel to China. This meeting was attended by Stephen Ling, Paul McCormack, Thomas Valenti and He Yuehua. Prior to this meeting, a discussion took place between Mr. Ling and Mr. Valenti regarding Paul McCormack and the significant contributions he would bring to ACOPAL. An award winning artist, Mr. McCormack, a highly established portraitist in the Nation, possessed the esteem from his colleagues throughout the United States. The combination of great artistic skills and leadership qualities left no doubt of the impact that having Mr. McCormack on board would have for the organization. It was therefore decided that Paul McCormack be named as a Founding Member along with Mr. Ling, Mr. He and Mr. Valenti. He was chosen as Vice President and subsequently became President when no other suitable candidate for the position could be ascertained.
Paul McCormack…………………………… President
Peng (Stephen) Ling……………………………Treasurer
Mr. Ling files for non profit status for ACOPAL and in a meeting with Aldon James, President of The National Arts Club (NAC), secures confirmation to use the address of the NAC for correspondence, Board Meetings and Exhibitions for the America China Oil Painting Artists League. Mr. He begins to build the website for the society which has the domain name: www.acopal.org . Mr. McCormack starts to invite the most distinguished artists on board while Mr. Valenti focuses on the documentation and collaboration with all the members on board.
In the few months since its inception, the America China Oil Painting Artists League has captured the imagination of the most outstanding Realist painters throughout the United States and China . Its current Members consists of the greatest artists of the 21st Century including Daniel Greene, Charles Pfahl, Scott Burdick, Susan Lyon, Joseph Todorovitch, Jacob Collins, Chen Yanning, Steven Assael, Graydon Parrish, Ronald Sherr, Gaberilla Dellosso, Anthony Waichulis£¬Dan Thompson and David Jon Kassan to name a few and the list is rapidly growing. There is no doubt that the ACOPAL is destined to reach mythic proportions and will be regarded as one of the most sought after art societies of all time. The one which brought together, two great cultures from the two greatest nations on earth. It will send a message across the land that art knows no boundaries.
Inquiries and correspondence can be sent to:
America China Oil Painting Artists League, Inc.
c/o The National Arts Club
15 Gramercy Park South
New York, NY 10003
For donations make check payable to:
The America China Oil Painting Artists League is a non profit organization and uses 100% of all contributions for the benefit of the organization.