CHEN CHI,  b. 1912

Birds at Topock Marsh

Watercolor 34" x 44"

Signed, lower left

Egrets in flight over Topock Marsh Wildlife Refuge on the lower Colorado River.

Chen Chi was born in Wusih Kiangsu, China. He taught painting at the Wu Pen and Huai Chiu high schools for girls from 1938 to 1944, and at the St. John's University School of Architecture in Shanghai from 1942 to 1946. He first began exhibiting his work in annual art exhibitions in Shanghai in 1940. Chi came to America in 1947 through a cultural exchange program to paint and exhibit his work. His first one-man show in the United States was at the Village Art Center in New York in 1947.

Chi's works have been shown extensively throughout the United States including

  • the Portland (Maine) Museum of Art
  • the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (1948)
  • the Miami Beach Art Center (1952)
  • the La Jolla Art Center (1953)
  • the Witte Memorial Museum (1953)
  • the Charles and Emma Fry Art Museum in Seattle (1955).

In addition to watercolors, Chi also worked as an illustrator, his illustrations appearing in

  • the Ford Motor Company Magazine (1950 & 51)
  • Colliers (1951 & 52)
  • Sports Illustrated (1955 & 60)
  • Horizon (1958).

Chi published numerous books featuring his works including

  • Chen Chi - Paintings (1965)
  • Two or Three Lines from the Sketchbooks of Chen Chi (1969)
  • China from the Sketchbooks of Chen Chi (1974)
  • Chen Chi: Watercolors, Drawings,Sketches (1980)
  • Chen Chi Watercolors (1981) and
  • Heaven and Water: Chen Chi (1983).

Topock Marsh is along the Colorado River in Arizona and was created by the backwater that resulted from the construction of Parker Dam. Features constructed by the Bureau of Reclamation as part of the Colorado River Front Work and Levee System help maintain a constant water level in the marsh and ensure a reliable supply of water to the marsh. Topock Marsh is part of the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge.