- Monday, 28 August 2017 15:21
As the saying goes, Chinese calligraphy is “silent music” and “dance on paper”. Chinese calligraphy does not only present the beauty of characters, but also expresses the writer’s emotions.
Mr Kelvin Liu is passionate about Chinese culture. His love of the Chinese language led him to transfer from science to arts subjects in secondary school. After joining the art club and learning calligraphy, he devoted himself wholeheartedly to studying and practising calligraphy. Whether it’s work or leisure, Kelvin’s life revolves around culture and education. After graduating from The University of Hong Kong (HKU), he worked in the news media and publishing sectors. The cultural atmosphere encouraged him to resume his habit of practising Chinese calligraphy diligently.
In 2000, Kelvin joined The Academy of Chinese Studies and was responsible for the development of The Splendid Chinese Culture website, rejuvenating his calligraphy journey. “I was involved in the planning of around 200 feature stories on Chinese culture, including one on Chinese calligraphy. My friend and I took private lessons with a teacher to advance interest in Chinese calligraphy. Later, when I joined the Centre for Advancement of Chinese Language Education and Research of HKU to promote the teaching and learning of Chinese to non-local students, I joined the University’s staff calligraphy and Chinese painting classes.”
Kelvin said Chinese calligraphy, which is infused with Chinese culture and philosophy, helps to express one’s emotions. “Calligraphy gives meaning to the symbols of life. Conveying your sincere feelings in writing – using brisk strokes when you are happy and expressing your unhappiness while you are worried and indignant – can relax you both physically and mentally.” He regards Chinese calligraphy as a way of building one’s artistic sense. If one keeps practising it, one can cultivate positive and optimistic thinking which helps to improve interpersonal relationships and facilitates a healthy body, mind and spirit.
Kelvin started teaching Chinse calligraphy while working at HKU. “In the beginning, I cooperated with the calligraphy society to organise Chinese calligraphy classes. I also taught students in the dormitory my daughter stayed at. In the process of teaching, my knowledge was also enhanced.” He continues to teach students Chinese calligraphy after joining HKBU. In addition, he was invited by the Staff Interest Group to teach Chinese calligraphy and painting, to cultivate teachers, students and colleagues’ temperament, and to help them relieve their stress and enhance their artistic sense.
To summarise his years of teaching and learning, Kelvin quotes from a gift from his calligraphy teacher: “Learning and teaching Chinese calligraphy and painting is a long journey. You have to keep on searching throughout the process in order to produce harmonious and unique works.”