The family and friends of award-winning master artist Linus Chao invite the community to a special art reception celebrating publication of his sixth book — “Linus Chao Watercolors” — from 5-7:30 p.m. Friday at Cunningham Gallery in Hilo. The gallery is at 794 Piilani St., across from Aunty Sally’s Luau Hale.
Chao will perform a short demonstration and discuss watercolor painting, and there will be a lucky-number drawing for his work.
Enjoy entertainment by One Rhythm, the 2014 Brown Bags to Stardom Band of the Year, whose members are Kenan Gebin, Joel Thatcher and Elias Hayes of Connections Public Charter High School, and William Kauhane and Moses Ahuna of Hilo High School.
Light refreshments will be served.
For the past 45 years, the multi-talented artist has diligently contributed to the enrichment of culture and arts in Hilo. Chao’s works in Chinese brush painting, calligraphy, watercolors, oil portraits, photography and animation are in private and museum collections around the world. He is most well-known for harmonizing traditional Chinese brush painting philosophy with Western watercolor techniques.
The new book contains 68 full-color prints of some of Chao’s favorite watercolor paintings done during the past 40 years inspired by the beautiful landscape and people on the Big Island, and from his travels in China, Taiwan, Canada and Japan.
A whole section in the book is devoted to two of Chao’s favorite subjects: snow scenes and horse paintings.
This book also includes photos introducing his 3-D art design of the four-acre architectural and landscape paradise — Studio Mountain View — where he and his wife of 59 years, the similarly celebrated artist Jane Chao, reside and teach art, and his philosophical thoughts about living life through art.
Linus Chao was born in the Year of the Horse in 1930 in Shangdong Province, China, and received a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Fine Arts from Taiwan National Normal University. During the 1960s, Chao studied and trained in animation and film at Toei Motion Picture Co. in Tokyo, Japan, and Walt Disney Studio and Hanna-Barbera Productions in Hollywood.
He is known as the “Father of Animation” in Taiwan and China for pioneering animated educational films in Taiwan. He moved his family to the Big Island in 1969.
Later, he received a Master of Science Degree in Visual Arts Education from New York’s Parsons School of Design.
He was a professor of fine arts at Hawaii Community College from 1971-2003. In 1997, Chao received the prestigious County of Hawaii Living Legend Award for his dedicated contribution to promoting culture and the arts.
In 2002-03, he received the University of Hawaii Board of Regents Medal for Excellence in Teaching Award.
Today, he continues to share his unique teaching style at the Mountain View studio with like-minded art students each Tuesday afternoon, when the combination of delicious food, art appreciation and painting lessons makes the time fly by.
Copies of Chao’s new book can be purchased in advance at Cunningham Gallery and Basically Books, and will be available at the reception. He is looking forward to signing them for folks attending.
Online book orders also are available at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Books are $38 each.
For more information, call Cunningham Gallery at 935-7223.