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date: 22 February 2020

Wang Shen [zi Jinqing ]locked

(b Taiyuan, Shanxi Province, c. 1046; d after 1110).
  • Bent L. Pedersen

Extract

[zi Jinqing ]

(b Taiyuan, Shanxi Province, c. 1046; d after 1110).

Chinese connoisseur, collector and painter. Son-in-law of the Northern Song emperor Yingzong (reg 1064–8), Wang collected old and modern paintings and writings about painting, thus acquiring a good knowledge of different styles. He also exchanged ideas about classical studies and aesthetics with his friend, the eminent writer and artist Su Shi . He based his landscape paintings on two distinct modes: for the more serious and austere he used the monochrome ink style of Li Cheng , and for the grand and lavish he took up the Blue-and-green (qinglü) manner of Li Sixun ( see Li family §(1) ). Both styles exhibited the then prevalent idea of expressing the artist’s personal interpretation of nature’s force and spirit. Wang frequently included tiny figures of fishermen and gentlemen in his landscapes as an indication of man’s position in nature. He often portrayed misty rivers and valleys with massive mountains in the middle ground and background, and in the foreground heavy, wrinkled rocks, to which cling dry, writhing pine trees. His rivers or lakes usually twist among the rocks and mountains, as for example in ...

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