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Taihu Garden Stone

Taihu Garden Stone

太湖石

Date unknown

Limestone

160 x 65 x 50 cm (63 x 25 9/16 x 19 11/16 in.)

Weight: 1527 lbs

Gift of Liu Dan 2022.23

Location

Did you know?

The donor, Liu Dan, is the most prominent and celebrated painter of rocks in contemporary China.

Description

Stones, similar to other landscape elements, are regarded as spirited beings in China. Taihu stones are particularly valued for their natural shapes and sculptural qualities and are a cultural peculiarity. These perforated limestones were originally sourced from Lake Tai in southeast China from where they got their names. They were collected, set up like sculptures in gardens, or installed on a scholar’s desk as miniature mountains. The veneration of garden rocks reached a peak during the 11th century when emperor Huizong painted the portrait of a stone and the scholar-official Mi Fu, a collector of stones, bowed deeply in front of an imposing garden stone addressing it reverently as "Elder Brother Rock."

See also
Collection: 
Chinese Art
Department: 
Chinese Art
Type of artwork: 
Stone
Medium: 
Limestone
Credit line: 
Gift of Liu Dan

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