Elisabeth A. Jung Lu: Marriage comes by Chinese calligraphy


Elisabeth A. Jung Lu, Professor of China Academy of Art

My name is You Li (Elisabeth A. Jung Lu), I’m from Switzerland.

I’m a freelance art historian and an artist. I’m focusing on calligraphy.

The first time I came to Beijing was in1990. It was purely for sight-seeing. Beijing was not a very big city then. You could see people riding bikes everywhere.

I like going for a walk in parks like Zizhuyuan. I can watch people in the park, playing cucurbit flute, dancing, especially the elderly people. I enjoy staying there.

Beijing has become a very international city. And it is even more modern than Europe in some aspects of everyday life, which is appealing.

If we want to describe Beijing in terms of chirography of calligraphy, Beijing is just like the regular script in Chinese calligraphy. Because Beijing, as the national political center, is more rigorous than other cities, which is also reflected in daily life.

The relationship between me and calligraphy is just like what you Chinese call “Yuanfen” (destiny). It’s hard to tell. It’s just like a person looking for something about which he wasn’t sure, then he suddenly found what he really wanted. I didn’t know what I really want until I came to China Academy of Art, and suddenly I know what I really want to do.

I met my husband at China Academy of Art. He was also studying calligraphy. Although we are from different cultures, we have the same love for calligraphy. So our love is inseparable from calligraphy.

Actually calligraphy is a root, a cornerstone of Chinese culture. However, calligraphy has no boundaries, so it’s not hard for western people to study calligraphy.

Everyone can learn the beauty of the rhythm and the art of lines in Chinese calligraphy

A very interesting aspect of Beijing, like many other cities in China, are the omni-present inscriptions. On the doors of stores, and various buildings, you can find inscriptions hand-written by famous calligraphers.

Wherever you go, you can learn some history of modern calligraphy.

My husband used to have a game, when we get somewhere, he would ask who wrote the inscription, what is the style of the calligrapher. And in Beijing, those inscriptions are like compasses or road signs, without which people may have difficulty finding their way home.

 Calligraphical works by You li

[ Editor: WPY]


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