The Ton Fan Group was established in 1956. This group of painters — the pupils of Lee Chun-Shan (1912–1984) — held its first exhibition in November 1957 in the building that housed the Taiwan Shin Sheng Daily News.

The name ‘Ton Fan’, which means ‘East’ or ‘the Orient’ in Chinese, was intended to express a desire to adhere to Eastern culture. The artists who participated in this first exhibition were described as ‘the Mounted Highwaymen’ by the columnist Ho Fan (1910–2002), as a way of highlighting their intrepid approach.

From the outset, the Ton Fan Group adopted an avant-garde approach that was orientated exclusively towards abstraction. They exhibited their works in Taipei and on many occasions in Europe; the continent influenced many of them, who settled there in the wake of Hsiao Chin. They also held exhibitions involving European artists in Taipei, where the works of artists such as Lucio Fontana, François Morellet, Piero Manzonni, and Antoni Tapies were displayed.

In addition, they had many contacts with circles of modern poets, with whom they exchanged poetry.

The Ton Fan Group was dissolved after their fifteenth exhibition, in 1971.

However, the Group’s members perpetuated its precepts via the establishment of Lee Chun-Shan’s foundation, who became the spiritual guide.