[ Chang Tse-tuan ; zi Zhengdao ]
(b Dongwu [now Zhucheng, Shandong Province], fl early 12th century).
Chinese painter . There is little historical account of Zhang Zeduan’s life. However, it is known that when young he went to the capital city Bianliang (modern Kaifeng) to study, and subsequently focused on studying painting. He became a member of the imperial Hanlin Academy in the Zhenghe (1111–17) and Xuanhe (1119–25) eras of the Northern Song period, probably serving as a court painter in the Imperial Academy of Painting. In his time he was celebrated for fine-line architectural painting, known as ‘boundary’ or ‘measured’ paintings (jiehua), especially for his boats and carts, bridges and moats, busy streets and city traffic and market places.
Although most of his paintings have not survived, he is well known for his monumental scroll Qingming shanghe tu (‘Going up the River on the Qingming Festival’; Beijing, Pal. Mus.) depicting the Northern Song capital city. This long handscroll, representing a panorama view of the vibrant, busy and noisy daily life in and around Bianliang, was painted shortly before the city was captured and burnt by the Jin army in ...