(Minghui.org) The Art of Zhen Shan Ren (Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance) International Exhibition was held at the Black Diamond Gallery in Port Adelaide, South Australia, for two weeks from April 6 to April 21, 2024. Thirty-seven paintings from eight artists were displayed in the exhibition.

Ms. Claire Boan, Mayor of Port Adelaide, spoke at the launch of the exhibition. She praised the achievements of the artists and said she admired the courage they showed in promoting the truth through these artworks. Visitors said the paintings inspired and moved them. People signed up for free introductory classes on Falun Gong after attending the exhibition.

Ms. Claire Boan, Mayor of Port Adelaide, gave a speech at the opening ceremony.


Mayor: Faith Gives One the Power to Walk Through Darkness

Ms. Boan said she believes everyone should have freedom of religious belief, to be able to share their faith without persecution. “I am deeply pained by what is happening in China, people are persecuted for their belief, this exhibition not only gives people a personal feeling, it also helps them understand and share the power. I hope more people can come and see the exhibition,” she said.

Ms. Boan was touched by the artworks. “After seeing all the exhibits, I truly understood this group of people who are persecuted in China for their faith. I admire the artists who have the courage to share these stories,” she said.

She walked toward the painting titled “Tears of an Orphan” and said: “This painting was the first exhibit to move me. It feels real. Not only are the parents victims in the persecution, the children are also affected and harmed. When you realise this, the persecution becomes even more real and you feel empathy; you feel sorry for the suffering of the children. This touched me; I began to cry.”

“These works contain hope, I think this is the purpose of faith. When we have faith, we have the power to walk through darkness, no matter what happened at that time, you will persist. These bright colors and power displayed by the paintings show hope for the future,” she said.

Ms. Boan went on to share her thoughts about the exhibition through a social media post: “You know those moments when it gets you deep? A few tears fell today. I learned of the persecution of people who have a faith through The Art of Zhen Shan Ren.” She encouraged people to see the exhibition to understand “what the regime is doing when people stand firm in their hope and understandings.”

Group photo with Ms. Claire Boan, Mayor of Port Adelaide (third left), taken at the opening ceremony for the exhibition.
Ms. Claire Boan, Mayor of Port Adelaide, shared her experience attending The Art of Zhen Shan Ren in a social media post.

Andrew Streeter, who is the gallery coordinator at the Black Diamond Gallery, was delighted to have The Art of Zhen Shan Ren in Port Adelaide. He said it was a moving, powerful exhibition. “The message she conveyed does not require words, it is something you can see, read, and understand with your eyes,” he said.

Andrew Streeter (right), the gallery coordinator at the Black Diamond Gallery, said the paintings passed on the message of courage and fearlessness.

Erin Roud, secretary of the Port Adelaide Arts Center, attended the exhibition and said the artworks were touching and more people should come to see them. “Many years ago, we spoke to students from China. They said they did not know the persecution was happening, some people even denied it was true. I hope more people can come and see this exhibition,” she said.


These Artworks Are Masterpieces

Allen Remachan, an arts teacher in the community, went through every painting in the exhibition meticulously. “These are masterpieces,” he said, “Not only are the techniques superb, compositions exquisite, they show rich spiritual content. Every painting is attractive. I particularly liked the drawing that portrayed the meaning of practicing cultivation and the tranquility of meditating.”

He pointed at the painting titled “Homeless” and said: “The angel portrayed in this painting, playing music for the girl who became homeless to avoid persecution, is peaceful.”

Roger said the paintings had deep, spiritual meaning.


Visitors Felt Warmth and Compassion

Jeff, a student from China, was drawn to the exhibition. He said: “I had an especially warm feeling after seeing the first artwork – the sculpture of a Buddha. It was a form of compassion. The painting ‘Studying the Teachings,’ a young mother reading the teachings while carrying her baby under the warm light, reminded me of my mother.”

Robert, a young Australian man, observed each painting and read the narrations carefully. He said every drawing told a story. He said he had met a woman who had told him about Falun Gong while strolling in the city centre. He signed the petition to call for an end to the persecution. When he went home, he saw information about the exhibition on Facebook. He even bought a souvenir of the painting “Lotus Flower” and said he wanted to learn to meditate. He attended the free introductory class on Falun Gong the next day.

Ms. Hunter said she was moved by the paintings.


I Support Falun Gong in Calling for an End to the Persecution

Port Adelaide is a tourist city and a cruise ship docking destination. During the exhibition, tourists from all over the world came to see the paintings. Many left their thoughts in the guestbooks, such as “shocking,” “beautiful,” and “the artworks record memories, reflect human rights, the realm of meditating, wisdom and hope.” Many visitors signed the petition to call for an end to the persecution.

A group of tourists from Hong Kong, who had stopped in Port Adelaide while on a cruise, came to see the paintings when they learned it was The Art of Zhen Shan Ren. Some took photos with their mobile phone while others took information. One of them, Mr. Zhang said the paintings were beautiful; they showed the Chinese culture of practicing cultivation where people and heaven become one. He said he supported ending the persecution of Falun Gong in China.

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