Ri Chang is an established artist with an over 50-year career in fine arts.
He joined the Korean painting production unit of the Mansudae Art Studio in 1973 and produced many masterpieces on various themes including Korean paintings Red Plum Blossoms, The Ulmil Pavilion in Spring and Mt Kumgang in Early Spring, thus receiving the Kim Il Sung Prize, the title of People’s Artist, and a doctor’s degree in art.
His best-known work is Korean painting The Old Man on the Raktong River (pictured) created in 1966.
This first work of Ri was inspired by the life story of an officer of the Korean People’s Army.
He employed the distinct, compact and delicate Korean painting brushwork to portray an old boatman on the Raktong River who risked his life to help the KPA during the Fatherland Liberation War and its soldiers on a mission burning with bitter hatred towards the enemy and heightened vigilance.
The creation can be claimed to have attained a high artistic level as it represented the figures and environment delicately and vividly based on well-framed composition, powerful strokes and matching colours.
It was highly appreciated at the ninth national art exhibition and is now on display at the Korean National Art Museum.
Ri Chang’s paintings were big hits at the 12th international art exhibition in 2009 and the individual art exhibition in China’s Beijing in 2012.