Flower Basket


TSUBAKI, Chinzan

椿 椿山
椿 椿山
츠바키 친잔

19th century
Color on silk

Gorgeous flowers painted by a late-Edo period artist learning from Chinese painting.

江户時代後期的畫家, 借鑒中國繪畫的手法描繪的華麗花卉
江户时代后期的画家, 借鉴中国画的手法描绘的美丽花卉
에도시대 후기의 화가가 중국 회화에서 배운 화려한 꽃들

Spring flowers are gorgeously arranged in a hanging basket and there are butterflies flying around the basket. The peonies, yulan magnolia, and hall crabapple with pretty little flowers are subject matters that were particularly favored in paintings of flowers and birds from early on in countries such as China and Japan, which was influenced by China.

Looking carefully, you will notice that the contours of the petals and leaves are not drawn. Instead, the shapes are represented in different shades of color. This is a traditional Chinese method. Depiction without contours was formerly employed in landscape painting and in the tenth century, the Xu Chongsi style formed a school of its own in flower and bird painting. Inscribed in the lower right is a poem by Zhao Meng-fu, a man of letters of China in the Yuan dynasty. Beside it, there is an inscription stating that this was painted according to a coloring method devised by the early Northern Song artist Xu Chongsi, who was the founder of flower and bird painting without contours, i.e. depiction without contours. It demonstrates the fruit of Chinzan’s studies of Chinese painting.