Brief Introduction to the Chen Cheng-po Corpus
During the course of the fifty two years of his life, Chen Cheng-po left behind tremendous amounts of works and historical materials. Apart from the well-known works of oil, watercolor and glue color paintings, there’re also charcoal sketches, ink paintings, calligraphies and watercolor sketches, while historical materials such as photographs, postcards and letters bear invaluable witness to a turbulent time. Edited by professor Hsiao Chong-ray, the Chen Cheng-po Corpus includes both the works and the historical materials in a total of eighteen volumes published by Artist Publishing, and marketed by Institute of Taiwan History of Academia Sinica and Chen Cheng-po Cultural Foundation. Each volume comes with an introduction, analysis and scholarly articles regarding the contents.
The first ten volumes are hardcover octavo deluxe form. The first volume features nearly 300 oil paintings, including those for which only black-and-white images exist. The second volume consists of 241 charcoal drawings, watercolor paintings, glue color paintings, ink paintings, and calligraphy works. The third volume contains more than 400 watercolor sketches most powerfully delivered works that feature female nudes. The fourth volume is made up of sketches and drawings, including 1,103 sketches. The fifth volume comprises 1,200 sketches selected from Chen’s 38 sketchbooks. The artist’s personal historic materials are included in the sixth and seventh volumes. The materials include his family photos, individual photo shots, letters, and paper documents. The eighth and ninth volumes contain a complete collection of Empire Art Exhibition postcards, relevant collections, literature, and resources. The tenth volume consists of research done on Chen Cheng-po, exhibition material, and other related information.
Volumes eleven to eighteen are paperback decimo-sexto copies mainly consisting of Chen’s writings and notes. The eleventh volume comprises articles and notes written by Chen. The twelfth and thirteenth volumes contain studies on Chen. The historical materials on the 228 Incident included in the fourteenth volumes are mostly focused on Chen. The fifteen to seventeen volumes focus on restoration reports and materials analysis of Chen’s artworks. The eighteenth volume features Chen’s chronology, so as to more vividly present the artist’s life.
Publishing the present collection is a huge undertaking. It not only shines light on his artistic accomplishment and life encounters, but also is the first step towards research and educational promotion.