Painting in National Palace Museum, Song dynasty part1
Welcome to the National Palace Museum's collection of paintings from the Song dynasty! Here, you can explore some of the most amazing works of art from this period in Chinese history. You will find works such as Strange Peaks and Myriad Trees, River Boats and Mountain Town, The Buddha Preaching the Law, Preparing Clothes, The Ladies' Book of Filial Piety (Scroll 1), Literary Gathering, Scroll of Buddhist Images, Plants and Insects in Autumn and Reading in an Open Hall. These incredible works of art provide us with a unique insight into life during this time period. Come take a look at these fascinating artifacts today!
1. Strange Peaks and Myriad Trees
This painting shows the scenery of high mountains with distant peaks appearing above clouds and a rising foreground enveloped in mist. The three groups of mountain forms echo each other, and the blank areas of clouds and mist highlight them further.
2. River Boats and Mountain Town
This painting shows two mountains rising up to surround a town with a temple on a mountainside and shops here and there. The temple is on a level outcropping and is built up the slope.
3. The Buddha Preaching the Law
This painting shows the Buddha sitting on a lotus pedestal with two kings on either side. The kings are wearing armor and holding swords and lances. There are also two other figures in the painting. One is a bodhisattva making offerings, and the other is a disciple.
4. Preparing Clothes
This work, done in 1240, is based on "Poetry on Preparing Clothes" by Xie Huilian (397-433) of the Southern Dynasties period.
5. The Ladies' Book of Filial Piety (Scroll 1)
The Ladies' Book of Filial Piety is a book about proper behavior for women, written by Madame Zheng during the Tang dynasty. Only half of the original eighteen sections are still available today.
6. Literary Gathering
This painting shows a group of scholars enjoying a meal outdoors by a pond. There is a big table with lots of food and dishes under a tree. In the front, there is a smaller table where some young attendants are preparing tea.
7. Scroll of Buddhist Images
This is the only surviving painting from the Dali kingdom, which was located in what is now Yunnan. The painting is from roughly the same time as the Song dynasty. The painting is divided into four sections.
8. Plants and Insects in Autumn
This small painting by Li Di shows the leafy tips of some plants, on which a praying mantis raises its forelimbs in an apparent attempt to catch a beetle that has just flown away before becoming its next meal.
9. Reading in an Open Hall
This painting shows a corner of a courtyard by a lake, with hills and rocks in the scenery. There are tall pines and bamboo around the courtyard, making it look like a peaceful place to live.