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Alphabe Thursday X is for Xia Gui

May 1, 2014

Xia Gui

For the last 23 weeks of the Alphabe Thursday I have tried keep to a colour theme.  It was not always easy and I am not sure that I have always achieved this. However, this week I have definitely failed; so instead I bring you Xia Gui (1195–1224) who was a Chinese landscape artist of the Song Dynasty. Very little is known about his life, and only a few of his works survive, but he is generally considered one of China’s greatest artists.  

During the Tang dynasty only the greatest artists were using colours for their paintings.  However, the gentlemen artist considered this vulgar. They preferred to combine the skills of poetry and painting while trying to portray the landscape of the mind rather than that of the eye.  Sadly, none of the Tang monochrome paintings survive; Later in the 13th century and the Song dynasty had a renaissance and it became a mainstream theory.  One of the most precious paintings in the National Palace Museum  is by Xia Gui called the Remote view of streams and hills.  

The dislike for colour still continued; Victoria Finlay in Colour retells a story of Su Dongpo a scholar and artist renown in the 11th century who was criticised for painting a picture of a leafy bamboo with red ink.  It was, the critic agreed ‘not natural’ and that ‘he should have used black!’

alphabet thursday

10 Comments leave one →
  1. May 1, 2014 3:15 pm

    Very creative and informative post for X ~ love the painting ~ xoxo

    artmusedog and carol (A Creative Harbor)

  2. Karen S. permalink
    May 1, 2014 3:28 pm

    Wow, quite an interesting post, thanks.

  3. May 1, 2014 5:00 pm

    Very interesting post !

  4. May 1, 2014 7:28 pm

    very interesting!

  5. May 2, 2014 8:48 pm

    I love Asian watercolor paintings! Very cool post. Thank you.

    • May 3, 2014 8:06 am

      I like this one and will look out for more Thanks for dropping by and kind comments xx

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