Friday, 29 July 2016

Uguisu Japanese Bush Warbler

#uguisu #japaneseBush Warbler

a new series on the Bush Warbler or Uguisu Horornis Diphone
starting with the hanzi

Copyright Julie Vaux 2016 


I don't like the redesigned Google paypal widget.

Could you please use this direct link ? Thanx

Next time some haiku and art

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Chiang Yee as a Painter

#Chiang Yee is known as a Scholar and Writer of Books on Chinese Art and Travel and we should also bear in mind he was trained traditionally ...very traditionally ...I was researching his books and came across this image.

Note how he has applied very traditional brush stroke and composition techniques to a very modern subject. I have no idea how accurate a depiction this is but it is interesting to see how traditional techniques used by Chinese artists can be applied to modern ideas and themes.
The Way of the Brush continues!

Endnote added nov 8

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Friday, 22 July 2016

Birds, beasts, Blossoms, and Bugs.

I've owned this book for a about 20 years or longer?
I think I bought it as a xmas or birthday treat for myself.

Its an excellent work on Japanese Art showing the use of Animal Themes in several media, ceramics decoration, lacquer, and several styles of painting. 

I can highly recommend it as one worthwhile hunting down a second hand copy of on amazon or elsewhere.

The author is Harold P. Stern and it was published by Abrams in 1976.

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

The 3 Friends of Winter

The Three Friends of Winter is an theme in #chineseart that groups #bamboo #pine and #plumblossom

I suspect its popularity is partly due to it being a great way to show you have mastered a variety of brush techniques !

In this one piece you have an outline style for the blossom solid ink for the bamboo leaves and fine yet strong lines on the branches and pine needles.

Note also how the three plants  contrast in both tone and texture and the use of angles in the composition.

Friday, 15 July 2016

Maitreya Mutates to hotei

#maitreya #budai #hotei

The first #chinese #buddhist sculptures of #maitreya were very ornate.

However from the Sung paintings and sculptures  expressing the popular belief that a Buddhist monk was an avatar of of maitreya known as Budai or Hotei in Japan.

Now this first image is Maitreya in Tantric and Esoteric Chinese and Japanese Buddhist art ... well the ideal version and in an earlier post I showed you Indian and early Chinese versions but there was a reaction distant ornate imagery partly as the influence of the Chan sects spread and partly because a simpler image is easier to render in and on less expensive mediums.

Budai had greater market appeal ?

This is Ming dynasty 

Budai here is a monk conversing  with a Confucian scholar. 
An visual expression of forms of Ne-Confucianism that attempted to reconcile the Way of Confucius with Buddha, an ongoing philosophical ideological and sometimes also political problem over the centuries in China.

Finally here's a Qing dynasty version of the popular ceramic "Fat / Lucky Buddha version.

Compared to some versions I've seen this one is restrained and tasteful!

I've also seen this as Japanese Okimono and Netsuke.

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Tuesday, 12 July 2016

WEI dynasty Maitreya sculpture

#Wei #dynasty #china #buddhist #sculpture #maitreya

Perhaps one characteristic of chinese sculpture that rarely gets commented on is the tendency to "frame" images even freestanding ones and how auras and thrones become part of the support structure whether the material is stone or metal yet the clothing becomes simpler with more drapes and folds and less jewellery. 

Note the date WEI dynasty. These are "ancestors" of those elaborate Qing Tibetan influenced pieces.

Perhaps the relative simplicity of paintings and ceramic sculptures featuring Budai / Hotei is a response or reaction to this?

Saturday, 9 July 2016

Maitreya in Indian Sculpture

#maitreya #kushan #gupta #indiansculpture #buddhistsculpture

Google Plus brilliantly showed the bottom image of the prior blog post as the top image instead of this!

Note how in Indian art Maitreya is masculine  

Now this Gupta  sculpture is from a couple of centuries later!

Still male but the mo has gone and if you've seen Khmer or Thai images of Maitreya you can see the links and the beginnings of a succession of changes to later versions in SE Asia and China

Next time back to China!

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Maitreya One

The first known images of the #Boddhisattva #Maitreya are Indian or #Kushan #sculptures to be more precise.

Clearly a North Indian aristocrat but the first Chinese sculptors to create Buddhist images made this WEI dynasty stele.

And later we get a divergence between images like this but also identifications and depictions of Maitreya as Budai / Hotei.

Budai is an odd blend of Chan eccentric and Taoist Sage.

More about this next time.