An Art Form that started in China more than 6,000 years ago

Chinese brush painting developed over a period of more than six thousand years; landscape painting was established by the 4th century, and figure painting developed beyond religious themes during the Song Dynasty (960 – 1127 AD) starting in the 10th century.

Another style is flower-and-bird painting, which became independent of other Chinese brush art around the 9th century. This gradually developed into two different styles. Asia Art.net

One famous 20th century Chinese brush-painting artist was Chen Zhifo (1896 – 1962), who was born to an educated family.  At 23, he went to Japan to learn patterns that later influenced his painting style.

Chen would become a renowned painter in the early 20th century. His artistic career started in design, patterns and other arts. When he started Gongbi style flower-and-bird painting, he was almost 40, and he revived the declining tradition of Gongbi. To discover how successful Chen has been, Christies.com sold one of his paintings for USD$242,400.

When Chen started painting, he usually sketched his subjects then went through many drafts modifying them before applying colors as he focused on the design of branches, leaves and birds to portray his subjects.

Discover Anna May Wong, the woman that died a thousand times.

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the unique love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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4 Responses to An Art Form that started in China more than 6,000 years ago

  1. Jon says:

    I’ve posted some templates along with article and video guide on how to paint Gongbi, or at least imitate it, which may be of interest: https://www.inkston.com/stories/guides/song-dynasty-gong-bi-hua-sketches/
    Looking to find more people who are actually practicing or teaching it around the world.

  2. […] via An Art Form that started in China more than 6,000 years ago — iLook China […]

  3. Behind the Story says:

    My Chinese brush painting teacher, Chen Bing Sun, studied in Shanghai before moving to Manila. His style was very similar to that of Chen Zhifo.

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