The Chinese female artist who brought the modernity spirit to the fine arts of China
Pan Yuliang (Chinese: 潘玉良, 14 June 1895 – 1977), born in Yangzhou as Chen Xiuqing, and was renamed Zhang Yuliang (張玉良) when adopted by her maternal uncle after the early passing of her parents.
She was a Chinese painter, renowned as the first woman in the country to paint in the Western style. She had studied in Shanghai and Paris. Pan returned to Paris in 1937 to live and work for the next 40 years. She taught at the École des Beaux Arts, won several awards for her work, had exhibits internationally in Europe, the United States and Japan, and was collected by major institutions.
Her story is loosely told in the novel Hua Hun (A Soul Haunted by Painting) (1984) by Shih Nan. It was adapted as the Chinese film by the same name, which was released in 1994 starring the actress Gong Li as the artist. Her life story is also re-enacted in the 2004 TVB drama Painting Soul where her role was played by Michelle Reis. The Huangmei opera The Female Painter from the Brothel (風塵女畫家) starring Ma Lan is also based on her life.