Chinese Calligraphy Artworks and Masters – Yan Zhen Qing (顏真卿/Yen Chen Ch’ing): Master Calligrapher and Politician


A Brief Biography of Yan Zhen Qing (顏真卿/Yen Chen Ch’ing)

As the Tang dynasty wore on, a figure arose who would redefine calligraphy, challenging even Wang Xi Zhi as the pre-eminent calligrapher. Yan Zhen Qing (709-785 CE) is sometimes known as the ‘second prophet’ of calligraphy. This status, just slightly behind Wang Xi Zhi, is more likely due to his later historical period than to any quantifiable difference in skill.

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Ink and Wash / Sumi-e Technique and Learning – The Finishing Touch on an Artwork


What is the Meaning of the Seal on an Ink and Wash / Sumi-e Artwork?

An ink painting is only fully complete when a seal is added to the finished painting. A seal is like a painter’s signature and comes usually in square or circular forms. Depending on the size and shape of the seal, it is either placed in a corner (large, square seals), or on the sides of the painting (circular, oval or irregular shapes). A name seal is usually square, where as other shapes can bear little messages.

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History of Chinese Calligraphy – Modern Period: Cultural Confrontation and Exchange During Yuan Dynasty (元朝/Yuan chao/Yüan Ch’ao)


The Yuan Dynasty (元朝/Yuan Chao/Yüan Ch’ao): Foreign Rulers and Sinicization

The conquests of Genghis Khan are known throughout the world. What is lesser known is the impact that the short-lived Mongol empire would have on China. Although the Mongols were able to conquer one of the largest regions in history, stretching from the Korean Penninsula to Ukraine by 1259 BCE, the size of their empire made it basically ungovernable for an essentially nomadic peoples. The rapid fragmentation of the Mongol Empire forced the Mongolian tribes back toward the east, and they were able to maintain political control over a much smaller region for the next hundred years. The region they held included most of modern-day China, Mongolia and Korea.

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