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Article

Celia Carrington Riely

revised by Katharine Burnett

[Tung Ch’i-ch’ang; zi Xuanzai; hao Sibo, Siweng, Xiangguang, Xiangguang jushi; Wenmin]

(b Shanghai, Feb 10, 1555; d Dec 1636).

Chinese painter, calligrapher, connoisseur, theoretician, collector, and high official.

At the age of 12 Dong Qichang, the son of a local school teacher, passed the prefectural civil-service examination to qualify as a Government Student (shengyuan) and was awarded a coveted place in the prefectural school. Mortified, however, at being ranked below his younger kinsman Dong Chuanxu because of his clumsy calligraphy, from 1571 Dong resolved to study calligraphy in earnest. His initial models were rubbings of works by the Tang-period (618–907 ce) calligraphers Yan Zhenqing and Yu Shinan (558–638), but soon realizing the superior merits of the Six Dynasties (222–589 ce) calligraphers, he turned to the works of Zhong You (151–230 ce) and the great Wang Xizhi (see Wang family (i), (1)). After three years he was confident of having grasped their style, and no longer admired works by the Ming-period (...

Article

Sadiqi  

S. J. Vernoit

[Ṡādiqī; Ṡādiqī Beg; Ṡādiqī Beg Afshār]

(b Tabriz, 1533–4; d Isfahan, 1609–10).

Persian calligrapher, painter, poet and chronicler. He came from a notable family of the Khudabandalu Turkmen tribe. At the age of 32 he turned to art, studying under the poet–calligrapher Mir San‛i at Tabriz; in 1568 Sadiqi moved to the Safavid capital at Qazvin, where he studied painting with Muzaffar ‛Ali. Sadiqi rose quickly in the royal atelier. The last major manuscript produced for the Safavid ruler Tahmasp (reg 1524–76), a copy (London, BL, Or. MS. 12985) of Asadi’s Garshāspnāma (‘Book of Garshasp’), dated 1573–4, has one painting (fol. 85v) attributed to Sadiqi, and he played a leading role in illustrating the incomplete copy (dispersed) of the Shāhnāma (‘Book of kings’) made for Isma‛il II (reg 1576–8). The seven paintings ascribed to Sadiqi show such characteristics of his early style as distinct colouring, hard contours, flat architecture and rigid figure drawing. During the reign of Muhammad Khudabanda (...

Article

Donata Battilotti

(d Verona, May 8, 1550).

Italian humanist, historian and patron. He was the author of the first printed book on the history and antiquities of Verona, published in 1540, with woodcuts after drawings by Giovanni Battista Caroto that are still extant (Verona, Bib. Civ.). De origine et amplitudine civitatis Veronae, written in Latin, takes the form of a conversation between members of a group of Veronese humanists including, apart from the author, Giacomo Villafranca and Giovanni Nicola Capella, and the artist Giovanni Battista Caroto. Caroto is given the task of providing technical information on the monuments that are the subject of the second book, which he himself had illustrated.

De origine was the first complete catalogue of Veronese antiquities, from the most prominent, such as the Arena, to miscellaneous remains such as displaced capitals. Also worthy of note are the Latin inscriptions, of which the author must have possessed a collection. The measurements are minute, and the monuments (except for the Arena) are completely reconstructed in the illustrations. Each is placed chronologically in relation to the salient moments of Roman history, and due recognition is given to the architects....

Article

Donata Battilotti

(b Padua, 1478; d Padua, May 29, 1574).

Italian ecclesiastic and historiographer. Educated in Padua, he later entered the clergy and was elected a canon of Padua Cathedral in 1556. He wrote a number of religious works but is best remembered for his book on the antiquities and illustrious men of Padua. This Latin work was granted a licence to print in Venice in 1557 but was published in Basle in 1560. Following the tradition of earlier municipal chronicles, Scardeone described the origins and cultural heritage of Padua, paying considerable attention to its ancient monuments and transcribing many inscriptions from tombs. He also devoted a chapter to the artists of Padua, from the 14th century to his own day, including Andrea Mantegna, Francesco Squarcione, Andrea Riccio and Tiziano Minio. This was the first attempt, outside Florence, to compose a local compendium of artistic biographies. Although the accounts of the lives of individual artists, particularly the earlier ones, often have an anecdotal or legendary quality, they are nevertheless a valuable source for the study of Paduan art, especially that of the 15th century. The frontispiece of this volume is a view of Padua by an anonymous artist: it offers the first accurate compilation of visual data on the city’s buildings....

Article

Ellen Johnston Laing

[Chun; Ch’en Shun; zi Daofu, Fufu; hao Baiyang, Baiyang Shanren]

(b Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, 1483; d 1544).

Chinese painter, calligrapher and poet. Born into a wealthy family of the scholar–official class, he is known for his landscapes (see fig.) and flower paintings. He was once a student of Wen Zhengming and was loosely associated with the Wu school.

He is best known for his landscapes in the style of the Northern Song-period (960–1127) master Mi Fu and his son, Mi Youren, and of their Yuan-period (1279–1368) interpreter, Gao Kegong (see fig.). The Mi style was rarely appreciated by Suzhou artists, but Chen’s affinity for it could be explained by the fact that his family owned a painting by Mi Youren. The style is characterized by cone-shaped or rounded hills composed of large, horizontal, wet blobs of ink applied in vertical layers. Chen added motifs and techniques borrowed from the Suzhou artist Shen Zhou, such as rhomboid plateaux outlined with dry brush lines and squat, blocky figures. Chen further modified the Mi style, giving it a rich, colouristic effect by introducing fluid colour washes and large blobs of blue and buff, as in his ...

Article

Xu Wei  

James Cahill

revised by Vyvyan Brunst

[Hsü Wei; zi Wenchang]

(b Shanyin [modern Shaoxing], Zhejiang Province, Mar 12, 1521; d 1593).

Chinese painter, calligrapher, essayist, poet, and dramatist. He was born to the concubine of a minor official and was reared by his father’s second wife after his father’s death. In 1540 he passed the first test leading to higher government examinations. He was married the following year and moved with his wife’s family to Guangzhou (Canton). Xu retreated to a monastery in 1550, after the deaths of his wife and stepbrothers, and attempted the higher civil service examination but failed repeatedly. While in the monastery Xu Wei turned his energies to writing and painting, producing paintings, plays, poetry, and essays on opera. His literary reputation resulted in his appointment as personal secretary to Hu Zongxian, the commander–governor of the southeast coastal provinces, a post he held until 1562, when his patron was accused of treason and imprisoned. Between 1552 and 1561 Xu Wei four times attempted the provincial examinations, the second stage in the civil service examinations, with no success. From ...

Article

Alice R. M. Hyland

[T’ang Yin; zi Bohu; hao Ziwei, Liuru]

(b Suzhou, April 6, 1470; d Suzhou, Jan 7, 1524).

Chinese painter, poet and calligrapher. He was born into the merchant class of Suzhou, where his father was a restaurateur, and although lacking social standing, he received an excellent education. He was a brilliant student and became the protégé of Wen Lin (1445–99), the father of Wen Zhengming. His friends in Suzhou scholarly circles included Shen Zhou, Wu Kuan (1436–1504) and Zhu Yunming. In 1498 Tang Yin came first in the provincial examinations in Nanjing, the second stage in the civil service examination ladder. The following year he went to Beijing to sit the national examinations, but he and his friend Xu Jing (d 1507) were accused of bribing the servant of one of the chief examiners to give them the examination questions in advance. All parties were jailed, and Tang Yin returned to Suzhou in disgrace, his justifiably high hopes for a distinguished civil service career dashed forever....

Article

Ho Chuan-Hsing

[Chu Yün-ming; zi Xizhe; hao Jishan]

(b Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, c. 1460–61; d Suzhou, 1527).

Chinese calligrapher, scholar, essayist and poet . Born into an illustrious Suzhou family, he was commended in the provincial examinations, the second stage of the civil service career ladder, at the age of 33 but failed in several attempts at the national examinations. In 1514 he took office as magistrate of Xingning County in Guangdong Province and in 1522 was promoted to assistant prefectural magistrate of Yingtian District (now Nanjing). He retired after less than a year and died at the age of 67. Zhu was an outstanding representative of certain literary circles in Suzhou, revered not only for his calligraphy, but also for his scholarship, essays and poetry. His individual and non-conformist beliefs made him severely critical of Song Neo-Confucianism, the orthodox teaching of his day, seeing it as both ill-founded and constricting. His love of liberty and adherence to the classics are reflected in his calligraphy, which is at once informed by a thorough acquaintance with the classical masters and executed with an expansive and uninhibited flair....