The art and life of Constance Chang provides a valuable narrative for modern Chinese painting as it developed outside the mainland in the second half of the twentieth century. Ms. Chang is one of the very few women artists of her generation to have gained a significant reputation as a painter. She lived in Shanghai, where she pursued a career in film, until her thirties. It was only when she moved to Hong Kong in 1948 that she began to study Chinese painting seriously. Free from the ideological and political constraints most artists faced in the People's Republic, she was able to experiment and respond to international modern art movements. Her paintings speak to the plurality of Chinese painting styles developed over centuries, and its interaction with Western art. The exhibition, The Elegant Lotus: The Art and Life of Chang Shangpu was on view at the Asian Art Museum from October 22, 2004–January 9, 2005.