Related News

Home » Feature

Six upright gentlemen

"THE Painting of Six Gentlemen" (Liu Junzi Tu) is a famous landscape painted by Ni Zan in 1345, vividly depicting the austere autumn scenery.

Ni Zan (1301-1374), a famous literati painter in the late Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368), left his hometown and led an itinerant life during his late years, which were times of social chaos. The painting of six trees standing upright in the bleak autumn reflects his feeling of being a lonely scholar of integrity in turbulent times. He compared the trees to gentlemen who were unafraid of severe circumstances.

The painting is displayed in the Shanghai Museum.

Ni's painting style is distinctive. Compared with other ancient painters, he gives greater emphasis to the aesthetics of space, which can be seen from his mature use of blank space. From the aspect of composition, this painting can be divided into three parts, top, middle and bottom.

The top section, also the far distance, is the mountain. Through using sparse, dry brushstrokes, he presents a desolate mountain. The bottom, or near distance, contains six different kinds of trees standing on the hill. The middle part is a blank area naturally linking upper and lower areas; the moving perspective makes the blank look like a clear lake.

The value of this masterpiece goes far beyond its technique and advanced use of space. Art critics consider it an expression of Ni's personal feelings and attitude, so this art is not only art but also a channel for personal expression.

For example, the painter consciously controls the pressure on the ink brush, helping to create a sorrowful atmosphere of loneliness and discontent.

The inscriptions on the work are also of high artistic value; they combine calligraphy with painting and are harmoniously integrated with the whole.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend