(Chinese, 1612-c. 1673)
Double album leaf mounted as a handscroll, ink and color on paper
Overall: 31.8 x 64.5 cm (12 1/2 x 25 3/8 in.)
Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1966.367
This spring scene was once accompanied by album leaves of summer (now in the Museum für Asiatiche Kunst, Berlin) and autumn and winter (now in the British Museum).
One of the acclaimed "Four Monks" (the other three being Zhu Da, Daoji, and Hongren), Kuncan was known for the rough and rustic style of his landscape paintings. This painting was once part of a large album, painted at the request of his friend Cheng Zhengkui (active 1630–74), with whom he shared a common interest in painting and poetry. The inscription contains a poem, which reads: Wandering through mountains and oblivious of time, We met in casual shoes (and attires). The wind and dew drops harbor a chilling emptiness. Only with patience and silence can the Chan inspiration come. . . .
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