The Taichung-based National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts (NTMoFA) will hold an exhibition featuring Chinese zodiac-themed prints to celebrate the Year of the Dog from Jan. 1 through March 18.
As Lunar New Year prints are traditional and festive decorations symbolizing a fresh start and good luck for a new year, NTMoFA has held the New Year Prints of R.O.C. competition annually to encourage and promote prints creation since 1985.
Dogs, which have high intelligence, physical strength, and the ability to learn, understand, and adapt to new environments, are the earliest pets to be kept by humankind. Dogs were also important life companions during the human evolution.
Records and legends about the relationship between humans and dogs can even be found in ancient Chinese text such as “Classic of Mountains and Seas (山海經),” “Yi Zhou Shu (逸周書),” “Huainanzi (淮南子),” and “Historical Records of the Five Dynasties (五代史).”
As the word “wang (汪)” for a dog’s bark is also a homophone for prosperity and surplus (旺), dogs have become a symbol of good fortune and blessings.
This year, NTMoFA received a total of 238 submissions, encompassing traditional prints, digital prints, and prints made with new, innovative techniques. The museum has selected six works for the top prize, ten merits, 20 honorable mentions, and 40 runners-up.
The exhibition will showcase 78 prints that feature dogs and the Lunar New Year. With dynamic contents and styles, the featured prints will highlight the diverse culture of Taiwan and celebrate a year of good tidings.
Commissioned by the museum, two of the prints titled “Wonderful (灣得福)” and “Move On (應隨)” are respectively created by artists Wang Cheng-tai (王振泰) and Hsueh Pao-shia (薛保瑕).
“Wonderful” presents the balance between modern and traditional prints through layers of vibrant colors, while “Move On” expresses the warmth and vitality that dogs bring to their humans.
‘The 33rd New Year Prints of R.O.C. Exhibition’