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Article

Ai Xuan  

Chinese, 11th century, male.

Born in Nanjing.

Painter. Flowers, animals.

Ai Xuan specialised in flowers and birds and was a member of the academy of painting during the reign of Emperor Shenzong (1068-1085).

Beijing (NM): Aubergines and Cabbages (signed work)

Article

Alchi  

W. A. P. Marr

Buddhist monastery in a small valley on the left bank of the River Indus, c. 64 km west of Leh in Ladakh, India. Tradition attributes the monastery’s origin to the Tibetan scholar and temple-builder Rinchen Sangpo (ad 958–1055), the ‘great translator’, and although its buildings mostly date from the 11th century, the site is replete with his memory, from the ancient tree he planted to his portraits and images in the temples. A treasure-house of art, Alchi has been preserved because of its isolation from trade routes and the decline of its community, the monks of the Dromtön sect of the Kadampa order.

Ringed by a wall and votive chortens (stupas), the religious enclave (Tib. chökhor) comprises three entrance chortens, a number of shrines and temples, the Dukhang (assembly hall) with its courtyard and monastic dwellings (see Tibet §II, and Indian subcontinent §III 6., (i), (a)...

Article

Bazaar  

Mohammad Gharipour

Bazaar, which is rooted in Middle Persian wāzār and Armenian vačaṟ, has acquired three different meanings: the market as a whole, a market day, and the marketplace. The bazaar as a place is an assemblage of workshops and stores where various goods and services are offered.

Primitive forms of shops and trade centres existed in early civilizations in the Near East, such as Sialk, Tepe in Kashan, Çatal Hüyük, Jerico, and Susa. After the 4th millennium BC, the population grew and villages gradually joined together to shape new cities, resulting in trade even with the remote areas as well as the acceleration of the population in towns. The advancement of trade and accumulation of wealth necessitated the creation of trade centres. Trade, and consequently marketplaces, worked as the main driving force in connecting separate civilizations, while fostering a division of labour, the diffusion of technological innovations, methods of intercultural communication, political and economic management, and techniques of farming and industrial production....

Article

Bizen  

Richard L. Wilson

Japanese centre of ceramics production. High-fired ceramic wares were manufactured from the end of the 12th century in and around the village of Inbe, Bizen Province (now Okayama Prefect.). This region had been a centre for manufacturing Sue-style stonewares and Haji-style earthenwares from the 6th century ad (see Japan, §IX, 2, (ii), (a)). At the end of the Heian period (794–1185) the potters moved from the old Sue-ware sites around Osafune village to Inbe, just to the north. In response to increased agricultural development, the new kilns manufactured kitchen mortars (suribachi), narrow-necked jars (tsubo) and wide-necked jars (kame). During the 13th century the wares show less of the grey-black surfaces typical of the old Sue tradition and more of the purple-reddish colour characteristic of Bizen. In the 14th century Bizen-ware production sites shifted from the higher slopes to the foot of the mountains. Kilns expanded in capacity, ranging up to 40 m in length. Vast quantities of Bizen wares, particularly kitchen mortars, were exported via the Inland Sea to Kyushu, Shikoku and numerous points in western Honshu, establishing Bizen as the pre-eminent ceramics centre in western Japan. By the 15th century the Bizen repertory had expanded to include agricultural wares in graded sizes; wares then featured combed decoration and such functional additions as lugs and pouring spouts. Plastic–forming was assisted by the introduction of a fusible clay found 2–4 m under paddy-fields. This clay, which fires to an almost metallic hardness, is still in use today....

Article

Cui Bo  

James Robinson

[Ts’ui Pozi Zx]

(b Haoliang, now Fengyang, Anhui Province; fl. mid-11th century).

Chinese painter. After establishing a considerable artistic reputation, Cui was appointed to the post of assistant teacher (yixue) at the court of Emperor Shenzong (reg 1067–1085) at Bianliang (now Kaifeng, Henan Province). Dissatisfied with his post in the imperial Hanlin Painting Academy, Cui was given permission by the Emperor to resign but continued to paint imperial commissions.

Cui established a new standard for painting within the Northern Song (960–1127) Academy. In contrast to the Tang (618–907 ce) style of animal, bird, and plant painting (see China, §V, 3(v)(b)), which stressed central, static compositions and employed strong ink outlines filled with luxuriant color, Cui introduced a new sense of action in his natural scenes, which were painted directly onto silk without underdrawing. In 1061 he produced one of the extant masterpieces of Northern Song painting, Shuangxi tu (“Magpies and hare”; Taipei, N. Pal. Mus.). This painting presents a confrontation between a hare and two magpies on a windy autumn day. The preciseness of a moment in time is emphasized by the backward and upward glance of the hare and the precarious thrusting forward of the bird above it. The effect of transience is heightened by the wind-bent bamboos and grasses, the decaying leaves, and the linear movement of the elements of this seemingly unarranged scene. The dramatic interaction between animals is unprecedented in earlier paintings. The coloring is subdued, and the hare and magpies are textured with hair-thin lines, appearing more lifelike than in any other previous example. Stories record Cui’s broad competence and versatility in subject matter. He painted narrative and religious themes, landscapes and animals, birds and plants, setting new standards of realism for subsequent generations of Chinese painters....

Article

Mimi Hall Yiengpruksawan

[Asahiyama]

Japanese Buddhist temple in the city of Uji, c. 18 km south of Kyoto. It occupies 1.65 ha of woodland along the western bank of the River Uji. Its ‘mountain name’ (sangō) and identifier prefix is Asahiyama.

Byōdōin is an independent temple affiliated with the Jōdo (Pure land) school of the Tendai sect of Esoteric Buddhism and has been in operation since the late Heian period (ad 794–1185). Its principal building, the Amidadō or hall for the worship of Amida (Skt Amitābha), is called the Hōōdō (Phoenix Hall) and is widely recognized as exemplifying the type of religious art commissioned by the Heian period aristocracy, who were profoundly affected by the popularization of the Jōdo belief and praxis in conjunction with extended emphasis on the Lotus sutra (Jap. Hokkekyō or Myōhō renge kyō) as a salvational vehicle.

Uji has long been noted for its picturesque setting on the river. From at least the late Nara period (710–94) it also served as an important trade stop between Yamato and Yamashiro provinces (now Kyoto Prefect.). By the 9th century Uji had been developed as a ‘resort’ for the villas (...

Article

Bent L. Pedersen

[Chao Ch’angzi Changzhi]

(b Guanghan, Sichuan Province, c. 960 ce; d after 1016).

Chinese painter. He was a painter of birds, flowers, and insects, following the style of Teng Changyou (fl. 907–920 ce). Although paintings attributed to him are not genuine, they provide an indication of his style. These works can be divided into two groups: one of relatively small paintings of flowers and another of larger pictures, with birds, insects, trees, rocks, and flowers.

Zhao is known to have studied his subjects thoroughly before painting them. The flowers he depicted tended to be the cultivated varieties he saw in the gardens of contemporary Sichuan Province or in the capital, Bianliang (now Kaifeng, in Henan). Although the flowers possess many realistic features, they are sometimes painted in a formal way, producing a decorative effect. Zhao was famous for rendering flowers in such a way that the thickness of the ink and color pigment could be clearly seen. This is evident in the fan painting ...

Article

Chinese, 11th – 12th century, male.

Born 1053, in Juye (Shandong); died 1110.

Painter. Figures, landscapes, animals.

Chao Buzhi was a scholar-official and poet. He also painted figures, animals and trees.

Article

Chinese, 11th – 12th century, male.

Born 1059; died 1129.

Painter.

Chao Shuozhi painted landscapes and wild geese. He was the brother of the painter Chao Buzhi.

Beijing (NM): Gathering of Herons and Geese in a River in Autumn (handscroll, with three inscriptions dated 1132...

Article

Chinese, 11th century, male.

Born in Yancheng (Henan).

Painter. Religious subjects, figures, scenes with figures.

Song dynasty.

Chen Yongzhi was a member of the Imperial Painting Academy during the Tiansheng period (1023-1032). A skilful artist, he painted Buddhist and Taoist as well as secular figures and was esteemed for his close attention to detail....

Article

Cui Bai  

Chinese, 11th century, male.

Activec.1050-1080.

Born in Haoliang (Anhui).

Painter. Flowers, animals. Murals.

Song dynasty.

Cui Bai was a member of the Imperial Painting Academy at the beginning of the Xining period (1068-1077) and was particularly favoured by the Song Emperor Shenzong. He painted several wall paintings in the palaces and temples of Kaifeng. He specialised in flowers, birds, and animals in motion....

Article

Cui Que  

Chinese, 11th century, male.

Active during the second half of the 9th century.

Painter. Flowers, birds.

Cui Que was the brother of Cui Bai.

Article

Joan Stanley-Baker

[Hsü Tao-ning]

(b Chang’an [modern Xi’an], Shaanxi Province, c. 970 ce; d c. 1052).

Chinese painter. Originally a vendor of medicinal herbs, he initially painted landscapes to attract potential customers. After attaining fame, he “frequented the manorial homes of princelings and officials,” for whom he painted murals, hanging scrolls, and handscrolls. He was a familiar guest of the rich and powerful in both Chang’an and the capital, Bianliang (modern Kaifeng), in Henan Province. Famous clients included Huang Tingjian’s father, Huang Shu (1018–1058). Huang Tingjian later eulogized one of Xu’s paintings:

I met Drunken Xu in Chang’an …

Quite tipsy, he would wield a worn brush dripping with ink,

With the force of an avalanche, his hand never stopping.

In a few feet, mountains, and rivers would stretch over ten thousand miles,

And fill the hall with a bleak and chilly air.

A rustic monk returns to his temple, followed by the boy.

A fisherman is hailed by the traveler waiting to ford the stream....

Article

Dorothy C. Wang

revised by Zhongming Tang

[Tun-huang]

Site of Buddhist cave sanctuaries, usually referring to the Mogao caves, located 25 km southeast of the county town of Dunhuang, Gansu Province, China. In the wider definition Dunhuang also includes the Xi qianfo dong (Western Thousand Buddha Caves) and the Yulin caves at Guazhou to the southeast of the town of Dunhuang. From the 4th century to the 14th, the Mogao caves were continuously carved out in four or five tiers on the cliff face of an alluvial hill that faces east over the Dang River. At its height as a Buddhist complex in the 8th century ce, the complex is believed to have comprised more than 1,000 caves. At the Mogao site, a total of 492 caves with wall paintings and sculptures survive, the earliest of which date to the early 5th century ce. Despite the changing dynasties, the caves and the artworks continued to be added until the 14th century, and still survive in excellent condition. The artworks in the Mogao caves are important not only for their individual value, but also in that the evolution of Buddhist art in Dunhuang over 1,000 years can be traced in this single site. A hoard of old and rare manuscripts was also found in a small room in the Mogao caves, including the world’s oldest complete printed book (...

Article

Enkai  

Japanese, 11th century, male.

Active during the first half of the 11th century.

Sculptor.

Enkai was a Buddhist monk from Mount Shigi near Nara. He was one of the first ­sculptors to use the yosegi (joined-wood) style of carving, whereby monumental sculp­- tures were made from several different blocks of wood that had been carved separately and then put together. Until that time, these large wooden figures had been carved using the ichiboku technique, meaning out of a single block of wood. Enkai’s famous seated statue of ...

Article

Chinese, 10th – 11th century, male.

Activec.990-1030.

Born towards the middle of the 10th century, in Huayuan, now Yaoxian (Shanxi).

Painter. Landscapes.

Fan Kuan’s biographical details are not well known. He was a landscape painter from northern China. It appears that he did not hold any official position and, after a peripatetic youth, he retreated into the mountain range of Mount Hua to devote himself to Daoism and the contemplation of nature. His work conveys the austere grandeur of the Shanxi mountains. Indeed, it represents the apogee of Chinese landscape painting and is among the most sublime in its entire history....

Article

Term traditionally used to refer collectively to four Chinese masters of calligraphy active in the Northern Song period (960–1279 ce) whose influence was profound throughout the succeeding Jin and Southern Song periods. They were Su Shi, Huang Tinjian, Cai Xiang, and Mi Fu.

See China, §IV, 2, (iv)(a)...

Article

Chinese, 11th century, male.

Born in Jiangzhou (Shaanxi).

Painter. Figures, landscapes.

Gao Keming was a friend of Yen Wengui. He was a member of the Imperial Painting Academy from about 1008 until 1053. Like other contemporary members of the academy, he was undoubtedly influenced by Guo Xi (...

Article

Genshin  

Japanese, 10th – 11th century, male.

Born 942, in Toma (Yamato); died 1017, in Omi.

Priest, painter (?).

Genshin was a member of the Urabe family through his father and of the Kiyohara through his mother. At the age of nine he entered Mount Hiei, the headquarters of the Tendai sect, and followed the teachings of the priest Ryogen (912-985). In August 999 he was named ...

Article

Roderick Whitfield

[Li Kung-linzi Boshihao Longmian, Longmian JushiLi Lung-mien]

(b Shucheng County, Anhui Province, c. 1047; d 1106).

Chinese painter and collector. He was from a family of scholar–officials, possibly related to the Li clan who were rulers of the Southern Tang (937–975 ce). In 1070 he passed the national civil-service examinations to gain the title of jinshi, which in the Song period (960–1279) was the culmination of scholarly achievement and means to the highest official careers. Li Gonglin, however, began by retiring to his native district.

Little is known of Li’s life during the 1070s. He was joined by friends in the mountains, and around 1076 went to Nanjing to visit the reformer Wang Anshi (1021–1086). In early 1078, Li bought land in Mt. Longmian, southwest of Shucheng, and began building a villa that he later depicted in a handscroll painting. A surviving copy of this painting is Shanzhuang tu (“Longmian mountain villa”; Taipei, N. Pal. Mus.), one scene of which, “Hall of Ink Meditation,” alludes to Li’s practice of calligraphy and painting as a means to enlightenment; there are also other versions (Beijing, Pal. Mus. and Florence, I Tatti). In ...