Known in the West as a friend to Tintin creator Hergé and model for Chang Chong-Chen, a character in the Tintin adventure The Blue Lotus, Qibao-born Zhang Chongren (张充仁) was a prolific sculptor and painter and an important figure in Chinese art.
Occupying an old house in Shanghai’s Qibao Old Street, the Memorial Hall of Artist Zhang Chongren (Zhāng Chōngrén Jìniànguǎn, 张充仁纪念馆) details the life of Zhang from his time training under artist Ma Xiangbo to his period studying in the Academie Royale des Beaux-Arts de Bruxelles in Belgium, and later his return to China.
Sculptures by Zhang, including busts of the composer Debussy and French president François Mitterand, sit on display alongside paintings, watercolors, newspaper clippings and photos telling the story of Zhang’s life and work. English signage is clear and plentiful.
The memorial hall is a great stop in a day tour of Qibao Old Street.