Formosan Blue Magpie｜1930s-1942｜Gouache on Silk｜128 x 41 cm｜LU Tieh-chou｜1899 - 1942｜Taipei Fine Arts Museum Collection
Tieh-Chou was born in Daxi Township, Taoyuan County. In 1928, he left for Japan to study Nihonga painting at the Kyoto Prefectural School of Painting. The next year, Lu Tieh-chou returned to Taiwan with his work Plum to participate in the 3rd Taiten, from which he received the honor of Special Selection. With numerous awards from Taiten and the Taiwan Governor- General's Art Exhibition (Futen) under his belt, he then founded the Southern Seas Painting Academy in 1936, tutoring a number of gouache painters.
The Formosan Blue Magpie is an endemic species in Taiwan. It is said to be the sacred bird of Taiwan's aborigines, such as Tsou, Thao, and Bunun peoples. In 2007, it was voted as National Bird by the campaign of Taiwan International Birding Association. Also it is listed as other conservation-deserving wildlife in Taiwan, and its population has increased due to the protection. On your lucky day, you might catch a glimpse of its stunning blue wings and red beak in the city.