Feature: Chinese painter urges efforts to heal Earth at global environment forum

Source: Xinhua| 2019-03-12 11:51:29|Editor: Yamei
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NAIROBI, March 11 (Xinhua) -- Chang Jiahuang received a deafening applause in front of a massive mural depicting pristine landscapes that he had just worked on in order to urge more efforts to protect environment.

The 68-year-old famed painter created a lot of buzz at the closing ceremony of the second global session of the United Nations Science, Policy and Business Forum on the environment on Sunday evening, by conveying a powerful message by his art.

"It is a great honor for me to be invited to this event and demonstrate the power of art in promoting environmental conservation. We all have a duty to protect our planet from damage," said Chang.

Chang was in his element when painting amid music in the live demonstration. His prowess in using colors and running the brush on the canvas captivated the audience from the UN forum held over the weekend, which seeks to foster a nexus between science, business, art and innovation to promote the global green agenda. The forum, held ahead of the 4th UN Environment Assembly, attracted more than 2,000 representatives from 68 countries and regions.

Chang's painting of a healthy planet with rainbow in the background is an inspiration to champions of sustainable management of ecosystems that underpin the mankind's livelihoods.

"As an artist, I try to bring out the best in our collective humanity to help solve challenges facing the environment. The world would become a better place to live in if we all focus on creative solutions to our everyday challenges," said Chang.

Chang is a pioneer in integrating topics on nature into art while the style of his works represents a fusion of ancient and contemporary traditions.

"I have always loved nature since childhood. My mission is to help preserve natural and cultural treasures to make the world a better place for every inhabitant," he told Xinhua.

Born in northwest China, Chang was inspired by his father and the late legendary artist Chang Shuhong, who was known as the "Guardian of Dunhuang." In the last 35 years, Chang has been at the forefront of an artistic reawakening that has rallied people around the protection of natural treasures like forests, rivers and wildlife.

For the life-long nature lover, his first trip to Africa was an eye opener. "Before coming to Africa for the first time, I used to watch television documentaries and films on the continent's scenic landscapes and beautiful wildlife," said Chang.

"I always wanted to visit this continent and savor its natural beauty. Going forward, I look forward to promoting cultural ties between Africa and Asia," he added.

A crowd gathered before Chang's mural displayed at the lobby of the UN Office at Nairobi.

"I watched him closely as he held the brush and run it over the canvas with ease. He is a talented painter and his conservation-themed works are an inspiration to me as a young community volunteer," said Rose Mwangi, a Kenyan college student in her early 20s.

According to her, she would post pictures taken with friends before the mural on social media platforms.