Zhang Fanfu (1918-1979), formerly known as Zhang Fuxian (张复贤), was born in Emei, Sichuan Province. As a student, he participated in the Progressive Student Movement. In 1936, he graduated from the Sichuan Art School and worked as a teacher and technician at the Sichuan Scientific Instrument Manufacturing Institute. When the Anti-Japanese War broke out in 1937, he was engaged in anti-Japanese underground work in Chengdu. After his arrival in Yan'an in 1940, he enrolled as a researcher in the Fine Arts Department of the Lu Xun Art and Literature Academy. In the following years, he was attached to the Inner Mongolia Culture Work Group, the Art Research Office of the Northeast Illustrated (东北画报, Dongbei huabao), the Art Research Office of the Beijing Newsreel Office and the Creative Office of the People's Fine Arts Publishing House. He took a refresher course at the Central Art Academy under the Soviet painter Maksimov in 1956.