His wish for UW Oshkosh students—the same artistic opportunities.
Hu died April 13. Prior to his recent death, Hu and his wife Ping established the Li Hu Art-Student Scholarship. The scholarship is for UW Oshkosh students pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. The scholarship will be awarded annually.
“Equal only to his pursuit for truth and beauty in painting, Li loved teaching and his students. Unselfish in sharing his passion, knowledge and skill, Li had a positive impact on everyone who had the honor of learning from him,” said Andrew Redington, UW Oshkosh associate art professor. “This scholarship exemplifies the character and spirit of Li—he desired to provide dedicated students with the ability to pursue their passions. He was a kind soul and the creative community has suffered a great loss.”
Hu was born in 1950 into a family of artists in Shanghai, China. After graduating from Shanghai University–Fine Arts College in 1986, Hu was appointed professor and taught painting there for four years. In 1993, Hu earned an MFA at the University of South Dakota.
Hu came to UW Oshkosh to teach in 1994 and eventually worked his way through the ranks to full professor. During his time at UW Oshkosh, Hu was awarded the Endowed Professorship in 2006.
“Li Hu was the most passionate artist I have ever met,” said Jon Wos ’05, a fine arts graduate and former student of Hu’s. “He taught me almost everything I know about drawing and painting. His teachings have touched the lives of hundreds of students over his more than 25-year career as a professor of art. To his students though, he was more than a teacher, he was, and will continue to be an example. He is an example of a great mentor, a great father and a great husband. He is an example of a great man.”
Since 1994, Hu has had more than forty solo exhibitions and more than 100 juried group competition shows at art museums and universities throughout the United States and the world. His work has been collected by several museums and art institutions and a hundred private collectors. His biography and work has been included in more than twenty books, including Who’s Who in the World and Who’s Who in America, published in the United States, and One Hundred Outstanding Artists, The Dictionary of World Famous Figure and The Dictionary of the Achievements of World Chinese Artists published in Hong Kong and China.
Hu retired from UW Oshkosh in 2013, but last year had 50 of his works featured as part of the exhibition Painting by Li Hu: 25 Year Retrospective in the Priebe Gallery at UW Oshkosh.
Hu’s artwork will remain on permanent display at the Li Hu Art Work Exhibition Hall in the Ning Bo Museum of Art in China.
Hu’s funeral is scheduled for April 23 at All Saints Lutheran Church, 1072 Honey Creek Rd, Oshkosh. Visitation will be held from 12:30 until 3 p.m. with memorial service to follow.
“Li deeply influenced an incredible number of artists while teaching at UWO and so many of us are leagues better as artists because of his influence,” said Elizabeth Kinsman ’07, who studied fine arts at UW Oshkosh. “Li was a remarkable person, a beautiful painter and the best mentor one could ever hope for. He will be greatly missed and remembered.”
Memorial donations can be directed to the Li Hu Art-Student Scholarship at the UW Oshkosh Foundation, 625 Pearl Ave. Oshkosh, WI 54901 or online.