(China 1682 – 1756)
Landscape in the style of Mi Fu
- Lower Asian gallery
- Further information
This painting is in the style of the gifted landscapist Mi Fu (1052-1109), a member of an 11th-century coterie of scholar-artists who formulated the literati (wenrenhua) theory the value of a painting lies not in its simulation of nature but in its transformation of nature into a vehicle that expresses the character and mood of the painter. For centuries this theory shaped the style of the scholar-amateur literati artists who worked in ink only. They scorned mere representation, aspiring to a deliberate awkward-looking style full of archaic reference tempered by an astringent intellectualism. In 18th-century Yanzhou, a wealthy class of merchants who sought to emulate the taste of the scholar-gentry class commissioned paintings in the literati style, such as this fine example by Hua Yan. One of the ‘Eccentric Master of Yangzhou’, a loose group of artists producing their own unorthodox interpretations of literati painting, Hua Yan was noted for the virtuosity of his brushwork. By his time the Mi Fu style of building up landscape forms by a series of dots (particularly obvious in his mountains) was a classic in the stylistic vocabulary of literati artists.
‘The Asian Collections: Art Gallery of New South Wales’. pg.150.
© 2003 Trustees, Art Gallery of New South Wales
- Place of origin
- China: Qing dynasty 1644–1911
- hanging scroll; ink on paper
- 129.5 x 61.0 cm image; 259.0 x 92.0 cm scroll
- Signature & date
- Signed u.l. corner, in Chinese, incribed in black ink, "Xinlo shanren painted and inscribed." Signed, in Chinese , stamped in red ink "hua yan, qiu yue, Kong chen shi hua, tai su dao ren [four artist's seals]" Not dated.
- Purchased with funds provided by the Art Gallery Society of New South Wales 1993
- Accession number