----- Original Message -----
From: Jonathan Henshaw
To: pander.nl@skynet.be
Sent: Sunday, November 21, 2010 2:20 AM
Subject: Father Mon Van Genechten


Hi Mr Pander,

I just sent off the item below to the Topica group but thought I should sent it direct to you also.
The book I mention is based on a Dutch work, Mon Van Genechten, Vlaming en Chinees kunstenaar, which might be of interest to you.

With regards,
Jonathan

***


Hi Weihsieners,

Apologies for the delay. Here are two of the drawings by Father Genechten that are known to have survived Weihsien. One is called "BlindMusician " and the other is "Beggar Woman." They are taken from the book Mon Van Genechten (1903-1974) Flemish Missionary and Chinese Painter: Inculturation of Christian Art in China by Lorry Swerts and Koen De Ridder.

Genechten, also known as ?? 854; (Fang Hsi-sheng, w. Xisheng meaning to follow the example of a saint/homonym for ‘to sacrifice') was a Catholic priest who used art as his mission. As part of his training, he became an expert on the traditions of Chinese painting and spent a great deal of time mastering Chinese painting techniques in the hopes of presenting the Gospel in Chinese artistic terms. This culminated in his work Suffering China.

Besides being an interesting figure, Genechten was also a tutor to Weihsien's Katy Talati, who went on to some prominence as an expert on Asian art and now lives in England. Talati describes him: "He was very jolly and friendly. Very much a 'Friar Tuck' figure who already as a young missionary (still clean-shaven then) was built on generous lines. He was also very sociable and liked nothing better than agreeable, young and pretty company, helped along by an occasional glass of wine."

With regards,
Jonathan Henshaw


Photo of the original painting at the Jacob Smits Museum in Mol (Belguim)

more about Father Van Genechten: --- a visit to Geel in Belgium click here