"Crested Ibis took me to the Qinling Mountains and I will do what I can do to present the bird to the world." Yan Zi said.
Yan Zi is a Chinese-Russian oil painter living in Shaanxi. On the morning of April 25, Yan Zi was intensively creating a large oil painting "Great Qinling Mountain and Beautiful Ibis" in the studio after she returned from sketching in Hanzhong Yangxian county in Hanghong city of Shaanxi. She is crazy about painting the crested ibis, and every year she goes to the Qinling Mountains to "hunt" the crested ibis and paint. She has kept the practice for ten years.
The story of Yan Zi and crested ibis begins with an encounter in her childhood.
Yan Zi 's grandfather came to China from Ruassia as an aid expert and his grandmother was a Chinese named Yan. When Yan Zi was a child, she lived in St. Petersburg with her grandfather. During a worship at Isa Kiev Cathedral with her grandfather, she saw a beautiful snow-white bird painted in the center of the church dome with a little red on the feathers. Yan Zi had never seen this kind of bird and she thought it was an injured pigeon. Her grandpa smiled and said that this is the bird of paradise that can bring good luck and goodness to people.
Where is the bird of paradise? Is it a legend or is it real? In Russia, Yan Zi has never found a bird of paradise, but has only occasionally seen it in the picture books of painting. Therefore, the idea of finding the bird of paradise lingered in her mind.
Having been interested in oil painting since childhood, Yan Zi followed his grandfathers's footsteps and learned oil painting. After returning to China at the age of 10, she was still a lover for painting. She studied oil painting art at Beijing Broadcasting Institute, went to the advanced oil painting class of Xi'an Academy of Fine Arts, and had several study tours in Europe for painting.
In 2004, Yan Zi settled in Xi'an. In 2009, when she went to Louguantai to sketch with her friends, a beautiful bird flew into her vision.
"Bird of paradise!" Yan Zi exclaimed. At this moment, she realized that it was crested ibis that hovered in her mind, and Shaanxi was exactly the home of the bird.
"I don't want to be separated from crested ibis for a moment, I want to draw it down!" From then on, painting crested ibis became an important part of Yan Zi's work and life. In the past ten years, she has painted the crested ibis in different seasons, regions, and poses, completed more than 600 works, and held many large-scale crested idol exhibitions. Yan Zi's beautiful, meaningful works show how intimate between crested ibis and human beings.
In her view, the crested ibis is a unique symbol of Shaanxi culture. Breaking time and national boundaries, the bird is loved by people of different eras and different races, and it is a cultural messenger flying from the beginning of the ancient Silk Road to the world; oil painting is a treasure of Russian art, expressing the color of Western culture and at the same time keeping the elements of Eastern culture . Yan Zi combined her love for crested ibis, the bird only found in China, with her perseverance in Western oil painting.
The crested ibis is regarded as a friendly messenger, symbolizing peace, exchanges and cooperation. It is Yan Zi's long-cherished wish to convey goodness and friendship like a crested ibis. Grandpa named her after Yanzi, a diplomat during the Spring and Autumn Period, and also hoped that she could contribute to carry forward with the Sino-Russian friendship.
"You take me to the Qinling Mountains, and I take you to the world." Yan Zi often shows his works to friends around the world through the Internet. Therefore, more people know Crested Ibis and Chinese culture through her works. Yan Zi hopes that she can also contribute to the "Belt and Road" like a prosperous Crested Ibis.