Home> Artistic and Cultural Figures

Zhang Leping

ezhejiang.gov.cn| Updated: August 9, 2016 L M S

1470724521926068855.jpgZhang Leping (1910-1992), a comic master born in Haiyan county, Zhejiang province, played a key role in the development of China’s modern cartoon industry and was mostly remembered for his work Sanmao, means “three hairs” in Chinese, telling the story of an orphan named Sanmao struggling on the streets of old Shanghai.

Zhang had a passion for painting when he was a child and started fighting against domestic strife and foreign aggression through comic works since 1927, which featured political satire.

When he initially created the character of Sanmao in 1935, his main goal was to dramatize the hardship of the Japanese aggression in China through the eyes of children, especially orphans. He wanted to express his concern for the young victims, particularly the orphans living on the streets. Therefore, Sanmao became the symbol for those children and has remained the most famous and beloved fictional characters in China today.

In the 1950s, he worked for the Shanghai People’s Fine Arts Publishing House, the Shanghai-based Liberation Daily and the Shanghai Youth and Children’s Publishing House.

Zhang donated most of his manuscripts of Sanmao to the National Art Museum of China and was awarded the title of Pioneering in the growing up of juvenile and children in 1983.