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Lessons from the Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival

Alex Chan sat down, picked up a Chinese paintbrush, immersed the tip in water, then dipped it in watercolor from a mixing plate and with quick strokes finished a bamboo painting in seconds. He picked up another sheet and with swift movements composed a Chinese orchid before moving to the next paper, where he finished a landscape painting with a waterfall.

 

 

The three demo artworks were done in less than ten minutes. If he wasn’t explaining the methodology, he could have done the trio easily under two.

Easy.

Or so I thought. Not until I picked up the brush that I realized that two hours was not enough for my fingers to get acquainted with the implement. More so, learn the tricks of the wrist to achieve an acceptable single stroke.

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

It’s my turn

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

It’s not as easy as I thought it would be. Teacher Janice to the rescue. (Thank you Jesse Boga for this photo)

 

More time is needed, and I needed that spark of passion. Patience, which is not a virtue of mine, is also a must. It’s quite clear that to master the brush one must master patience.

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Mentoring the media

 

Patience was what the teachers in the room were exuding, from the patriarch himself, Chan Lim, his family, Alex included, and the students. There were 25 of them, all accomplished artists who are in town for the Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival.

This is the fifth time the Chan Lim family of artists and students flew in to hold an exhibit at the SM Lanang Premier.

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival participants

 

“Every year, we have a different theme and we aim to make the exhibit bigger and better,” said Alex.

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Bigger every year. The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival displays 340 artworks

 

Last year’s Davao mall show, which had 330 artworks, centered on lanterns.

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Handpainted fans hihglight this year’s Chan Lim exhibition

 

This year, the hand-painted fans will highlight the exhibit. Of the 340 paintings, 200 are fans and the rest are on scrolls, canvas and a porcelain jar (this year’s piece de resistance by Chan Lim entitled “Four Beautiful Women”).

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Flowers by Chan Lim

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Roosters by Babyruth Chuaunsu

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

It’s like a fable or myth is told on this piece by Xanthe Vienne Ong

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Flowers by April Go Que

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Cranes by Xanthe Vienne Ong

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Bamboos by Babyuth Chuaunsu

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

On scrolls, paintings by Kathleen Uy Kong, Dr. Felix Chan Lim & Rolex Chan Lim

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Chan Lim’s Four Beautiful Ladies on a porcelain jar

 

It’s a special time for the family. Chan Lim is celebrating his 80th birthday this year, and on that note, Alex said the artworks will be exhibited in eight cities, seven in the Philippines and one in the USA. Davao is the 7th stop and the General Santos show will culminate the exhibit run.

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Chan Lim, who is 80 this year, will take the exhibit to 8 locations with 7 in the Philippines and 1 in the USA

 

“Davao has a special place in my dad’s heart and he is quite fond of the Philippine eagle that’s why he’s donating P20,000 to the foundation as part of his celebration,” Alex said.

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

Talented & generous. Chan Lim is 80 this year & as part of his celebration, he donated to the Philippine Eagle Foundation

 

I could have joined the 500 other soon-to-be-masters in the atrium the Chan Lim family and students are mentoring, but opted to admire the artworks on display. My love affair with the paintbrush might just happen, who knows?

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

500 participants in this year painting lesson

 

What of my first bamboo painting? My mentor, Janice Azarias, said I was a quick learner. That’s certainly a compliment from someone who shocked me with her exhibited artworks I marked as my favorites.

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

My first attempt in Chinese brush painting. With teacher Janice Azarias

 

Shocked because I always browse for pieces that appeal to me before I look at the artist’s name. A couple of Janice’s pieces certainly popped up from the array.

 

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival in Davao

I marked this as one of my favorite. Surprise, it’s by my teacher, Janice Azarias

 

How to be you, Chan Lim family and students?

The Chan Lim Mid-Autumn Art Festival at the atrium of the SM Lanang Premier will run until September 16.

For travel stories, visit www.jeepneyjinggoy.com. Email me at jinggoysalvador@yahoo.com

Also published in the SunStar Davao newspaper.

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