Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Day's Outting in the Town of San-Shia II

After the Zu-Shi-Yeh Temple, I wanted to visit the Artist Li Mei-Shu's Memorial Museum. It is across the San-Shia Bridge, away from the old town. A short stroll later, we arrived at the Memorial Museum. The entrance fee was NT$100 per person = USD$3.30 or so. The museum is small, quiet and nicely appointed inside.

We stepped in and entered the time capsule. Li was born in 1902, during which time Taiwan was still under Japanese rule. There was a small display of his personal belongings, including his homework exercise books, letters, clothing, family photos, all of which reflected the nostelgic old romantic times. He was the first and leading realist oil painter of his times and I was very touched by how his paintings were not only beautiful but also full of emotions.

Some of the paintings were unbelieveably realistic. The one I loved the most was of a woman by the creek, looking straight ahead and smiling, the ray of the sun twinkled on the water and the woman's glistening face. The picture was so realistic looking you can almost hear the creek water splashing.

Another painting was of a few women sitting in a traditional Taiwanese shredded ice dessert house (the equivalence of a gelato or ice cream parlor) relaxing. It reminds me very much of my own childhood years when my mom and aunts would dress exactly as the ladies in the painting.

We slowly perused all the paintings and displays, took a long rest on the chair in the waiting room savoring the quiet and cool air, before exiting the museum into the raucous street again.

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