Nian Chen was also known as Jingshan (courtesy name) and Banding (pseudonym). Chen was well-known in the Northern Chinese painting group in the early 20th century. As a representative of Jing-Jin School (Beijing and Tianjin painter's style), Chen worked as the vice-president of the Chinese Painting Research Institute, a member of Central Research Institute of Culture and History, the Deputy Director of Beijing Art Academy, board member in China Artists’ Association, committee member of Chinese Federation of Literary and Art Circles (CFLAC), and commissioner of National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC). Chen specialized in painting landscapes as well as flowers and birds. His work was influenced by several masters such as Bonian Ren, Changshuo Wu, Wei Xu, Tao Shi, and Zhiqian Zhao. In his forties, he created his own artistic style representing a combination of different flower painting skills popular in Song and Yuan dynasty.