Shiao Ju-sung was born in Taipei City. His father Shiao Hsiang-an was the first Taiwanese lawyer during the Japanese Occupation Period, and highly valued education for his children. Between 1935 and 1940, he was a student at the Taipei Municipal First High School. Before the age of 18, he also lived in metropolitan Taipei. In 1940, he moved to Hsinchu and studied at the Department of Training Course at Hsinchu Normal School. In 1946, the artist settled down there. August of 1958, he began teaching at Provincial Chutung Senior High School. There he would continue teaching until retirement in February 1988. He won plentiful awards from 1952 on, including some from “Hsinchu County Fine Arts Exhibition.” Shiao was awarded the Taiwan Provincial Department of Education Excellent Teacher Award in 1957. He had long participated in “Tai-yang Art Exhibition” since 1939. He was also a member of Tai-yang Art Society, Chingyun Art Society and “Taiwan Provincial Fine Arts Exhibition” Review Committee. The artist secured the third prize in western painting at the 10th and 28th “Taiwan Provincial Fine Arts Exhibition,” Provincial Government Award in watercolor painting, Tai-yang Award, and the 1973 Republic of China Painting Association Golden Nobility Award. In 1988, a retrospective exhibition of his was held at the Apollo Art Gallery in Taipei. Shiao died of disease in Hsinchu in 1992 at age 71.
Shiao was dedicated to creating watercolor paintings throughout his life. His subjects include people, objects and landscape around. The artist was able to thoroughly express a sense of loneliness with simple color masses and lines. While his paintings have a dreamlike atmosphere and, there is always a clear depth of field. Although the drawing lines in his paintings seem to resonate like music beats, there is a sense of afternoon tranquility. The transparent glass, yellow flowers, white leave, clean table and reflections of window frames create a realist scene in surreality. The Mondrian balance, integrated into Shiao’s orderly, concentrated effort, becomes Shiao’s own artistic quality.
Shiao lived through the White Terror of Taiwan as a teenager. This may explain why his paintings carry a deep sense of lonesomeness. Shiao was inspired by famous Japanese art teacher Siotuki Touhou. Shiao said, “Siotuki Touhou was so busy that he often skipped classes himself. Although I was a student at the TFBHS, I only received instructions from Siotuki twice. However, his teachings are so enlightening that I still review them once in a while these days.” From the quasi-abstract paintings that Shiao created in his late years of life, one can see that Siotuki had profound influence on Shiao: the paintings are featured by “a strong will, a romantic atmosphere, and overwhelming emotions.” The artist was also influenced by noted Japanese art teacher Arikawa Takeo at high school, as well as and painter-teacher Li Che-fan upon moving to Hsinchu in 1946. According to Shiao, “I was inspired by Li’s use of colors and light.” The artist’s watercolor paintings are featured by well-executed lines that look strong and tender at once, as well as bright colors.
|Medium / Classification：||Watercolor|
|Life-span：||1922 - 1992|
|Collection Unit：||National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts|
|Contact method for authorization：||
Guide to the Use of Image Files and Data from the Online Collection Database
|Related Exhibition：||Unique Vision Ⅱ：Highlights from the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts Collection|