ZENG Shan Qing did all the right things. As a student at the Central Art Academy of Beijing during the late 1940s, he dutifully perfected the required socialist-realist painting techniques and, after graduating, concentrated on politically correct portraits of peasants and minority peoples. They were too correct. And so, when the Cultural Revolution came Zeng was accused of ''uglifying'' his subjects. He stood his ground and the next 10 years were grim. Then the nightmare ended and Zeng was restored to favour. Word soon spread about the gifted Chinese who had refused to compromise his artistic integrity. In 1986, he received a fellowship from the State University of New York at Stony Brook where he remains as artist-in-residence. The years abroad have been rewarding. Today, Zeng Shan Qing's works can be found in some of the world's most important collections including that of the British Museum. They can also be seen at his first one-man show in Hong Kong, starting next Tuesday at the Ocean Terminal galleries of Charlotte Horstmann and Gerald Godfrey. On display till October 12 will be ink paintings created during the last three years. They feature Zeng's favourite subjects: the proud people of Tibet and China's rugged northern plains, and superbly rendered, that freedom-loving animal, the horse. LIKE his contemporary Zeng, 65-year-old Lok Tok studied traditional and Western painting styles in Beijing during the late 40s, fell from grace during the Cultural Revolution, now lives in North America, enjoys an international reputation - and yes, he paints horses. They are depicted with rare feeling in Lok Tok's World of Horses showing at Art Beatus, Stanley Street, Central, till October 5. A brief resume explains why. In 1957, Lok was branded a ''rightist'' and sent to a labour camp where, for the next 13 years, one of his daily chores was to feed a couple of horses. He was released in 1978, broken in health but not in spirit, and was allowed to leave China the same year. Toronto is home now and Lok's work is in the permanent collection of the Royal Ontario Museum, but fame hasn't erased the past. The horses remain, vivid as ever. A VILLAGE girl balances on a rock. Behind her sprawls her sleeping companion. It could be a photograph. But no, this is Chinese Realism of the 90s, brought to startling life by Wang Yi Dong. As one of the stars of the school, the 38-year-old Shandong native is commanding top dollar - his painting Raining at Mount Meng fetched a record price at a Christie's auction in 1992. With the big time has come controversy. To some, super-realism is a sterile exercise glorifying technique at the expense of artistic expression. Others charge that the market for these ''perfect'' paintings has been deliberately fuelled. Schoeni Art Gallery shares neither view. Wang is a ''master painter'' whose works ''confront us with mystery and an inner beauty based on simplicity and truthfulness'' - a true talent fully deserving of his success. On view at the gallery at On Hing Terrace, Central, till October 15, are recent works by Wang Yi Dong, an associate professor at the Central Academy of Art, Beijing. WIEDER Gewalt. The words mean ''against violence'' - the brutal, sickening violence of the neo-Nazis that has claimed innocent lives and brought a shocking image to the world: Germany in flames. In its wake, came Germany aglow as hundreds of thousands, candles aloft, took to the streets to demonstrate their condemnation of the evil and their passionate desire for peace and goodwill. Solidarity took another form: Posters Against Violence and Xenophobia, were organised nationwide. Almost 1,600 German artists responded and a jury chose 150 posters for display. The best of them can be seen in Wieder Gewalt, showing at the Goethe Institut, Hong Kong Arts Centre, till October 2. The point of the exhibition: ''To take a stand against hostility towards foreigners and give us a head-start in mentally confronting these inhuman incidents.'' TO mark its first anniversary at the Fringe Club, J. R. Guettinger Gallery is presenting a new collection of gouache on rice paper paintings by up-and-coming young mainland artist, Yong Ping. Forget super-realism. This is an unashamed sensualist who admits that Chinese folk art and Gauguin have been his strongest influences. As usual, women figure prominently; lush young beauties depicted in both exotic and rural settings. Whether displaying their curves - there are several nudes - or buying fish at a market, they are beguiling. Innocence and Enchantment: New Paintings by Yong Ping continues till October 7. THE symbol of the week happens to be a powerful influence for leading New Zealand artist John Papas. ''I was born in the Year of the Horse,'' says this celebrated 1942 product of a Greek father and Scottish mother. One of his finest horse studies graces the invitation for his one-man show, Silence on the Land, showing at Trigram, Hong Kong Hotel, Kowloon, till October 4. It is a little misleading, for the paintings and murals are mainly dedicated to the glories of ancient Greece sculpture. They also demonstrate the versatility of this well-travelled artist whose materials include bronze, steel, glass, perspex and terracotta tiles. AFTER Koo Mei moved from Guangzhou to Hong Kong in 1950 she worked as a singer and actress. Twenty years later, she quit showbiz to concentrate on her first love, painting. This was no novice. A student of Zhao Shao'ang and later, Lu Shoukun, Koo Mei was adept at landscapes as well as flower and bird studies. To these, she added her own landscape style - subtle ink tones and colour washes which intrigued with their beauty and mystery. Beyond Visions, featuring the latest work of this prize-winning artist, can be seen at Artpreciation, Stanley Street, Central, till October 9.