Chinese Culture Foundation of San Francisco Visual Art Program 舊金山中華文化基金会艺术家項目
Chinese art has a rich history, and many different art forms coming from China can be dated to the influences of a specific historic dynasty. For example, the complex Chinese art of paper cutting dates back to the Eastern Han Dynasty 200 to 200 CE (or BC). The art began almost immediately after the invention of paper. Chinese painting, on the other hand, attributes its beginnings the the Tang Dynasty in 8th century, remaining prominent through the Tang Dynasty in 14th through the 17th centuries.
Whatever medium we select, when we look at Chinese art, we are looking at creations that are steeped in Chinese history and culture. The beautiful, intricate, and exotic paintings, sculptures, prints, and ceramic pieces that have us enamored here in the western world, speak volumes about the world that existed around the artists at the time of their inception.
There are two primary painting techniques in Chinese art. These are “meticulous,” which refers to court-type painting, and is characterized by detailed, realistic images, and “freehand, “ which references watercolor and brush painting. Paintings now valued and emulated from China include scroll paintings, idyllic landscapes, and warrior/battle scenes.
The art of calligraphy dates back to the Shang Dynasty in 1600 to 1046 CE, or BC. This predates paper, and calligraphy was carved into bone. The Han Dynasty, existing from 206 to 220 CE, ushered in the creation of cursive script. During the Tang Dynasty in the 8th century, Daoists were people who could draw or write supernatural talismans to ward off evil spirits. These were highly complex renderings of calligraphy. While calligraphy is considered a highly valued method of writing in China, it is deemed my many to be a form of Chinese art.
The Chinese art of gardening dates back to the Zhou Dynasty, from 1045 to 645 CE. The Chinese Classical Garden, also known as the Chinese Scholar's Garden, were designed as a place of quiet contemplation and union with nature. Plans were used as symbols. Bamboo symbolized a strong, resilient character; the lotus stood for purity; the flowering plum stood for renewal and strength of will.
Mei Chen Fang
Silk Road Enterprises