10 Views of the Honorable Old Man Scholars Rock – Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Ten Differentiated Views of the Honorable Old Man by Liu Dan (Chinese, born 1953)
Beijing, China, 2007-10
Set of nine hanging scrolls and one handscroll

On exhibit as part of Fresh Ink: Ten Takes on Chinese Tradition
Dates: November 20, 2010 – February 13, 2011
Location: Gund Gallery, Museum of Fine Arts. Boston, MA

Liu Dan describes rocks as ‘the stem cells of Chinese landscape painting’ because they ‘hold the myriad forms of nature and their ability to transform is infinite’. Liu (b. 1953) believes that a well-chosen rock holds countless suggestions of both physical and spiritual landscapes, much like a stem cell has the ability to develop into any part of a complex organism. His paintings are pictorial expressions of this point of view.

Art connoisseurs and scholars in China have been studying and collecting rocks for millennia. A fine rock stimulates shenyou, ‘imagined travel’, by suggesting a landscape for the viewer to enter and explore. For practitioners of rock viewing, the ability to successfully transform a rock into a fully realized, imagined landscape is a measure of a person’s inner harmony with the underlying order of the cosmos.

Liu first began painting rocks after emigrating from China to the United States in 1981. His rock portraits are the result of deep and sustained meditation on his subjects, but ultimately, they are only necessary steps leading to his final goal: a fully realized mental and spiritual landscape that transcends the limitation of this physical world. In his new work, Ten Differentiated Views of the Honorable Old Man, Liu has succeeded in making visible such flights of fancy.

(sourced from Orientations magazine)


    

Paintings by Max Weiler in a discourse with Chinese Scholars’ Rocks

Max Weiler (1910 – 2001) “The Nature of Painting” is the title of an exhibition in celebration of the 100th birthday of the artist at the ESSL Museum in Klosterneuburg near Vienna, Austria from 19th March to 29th August 2010.

The exhibition “The Nature of Painting” takes account of Max Weiler’s profound relationship with old Chinese art and Chinese thought through a juxtaposition of the painting cycle “Like a Landscape” with Chinese scholar’s rocks.

It is the first time that modern paintings are shown together with traditional Chinese Scholars’ Rocks. The opening of this endeavour was a great success where many prominent persons of the cultural scene in Austria as well as the ambassador of China
Popular Republic attended.


Installation Essl Museum 2010: Chinese Scholars’ rock “Cave of the
Heremit Fu-Sheng”, Ying stone of 34 x 25 x 44 cm, place of origin: Guangdong,
China, Willi Benz collection


Installation view Essl Museum 2010: Painting by Max Weiler in a dialogue with a Chinese
scholars’ rock, Lingbi stone of 52 x 20 x 46 cm, Willi Benz collection


Ying stone of abstract shape from Guangdong, China (25 x 10,5 x 45,5
cm), Willi Benz collection


Installation Essl Museum 2010: paintings by Max Weiler together with a
Lingbi stone 27 x 18 x 63 cm, Anhui, China, Willi Benz collection


Photos: Suiseki Journal (Issue 3/2010) published by the European Suiseki Association
More Information: http://esslmuseum.org/english/exhibitions/weiler.html
Video of exhibition:

Viewing Stones at National Bonsai & Penjing Museum

From the National Bonsai Foundation website (http://www.bonsai-nbf.org/site/viewing_stones.html)

Taihu Chinese Scholar?s Rock – Taihu stone

From Lake Tai, Jiangsu Province, China
83 x 38 x 30 cm
Donated by Kemin Hu, 2000
Photo: Joe Mullan

Taihu Chinese Scholar?s Rock – Lingbi stone

From Lingbi, Anhui Province, China
73 x 34 x 20 cm
Donated by Kemin Hu, 2000
Photo: Joe Mullan

Scholars’ Rocks at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY

(http://www.metmuseum.org/special/scholar/scholar_images.html)


Rock in the form of a seated tiger
Black Lingbi limestone with carved wooden stand
Promised Gift of the Richard Rosenblum Family


Vertical Rock
Gray Lingbi limestone with carved wooden stand
Promised Gift of the Richard Rosenblum Family


Vertical Rock
Off-white Zhaoqing limestone with carved wooden stand
Promised Gift of the Richard Rosenblum Family


Bamboo in Wind, about 1460
Xia Chang (1388-1470)
Hanging scroll; ink on paper
Edward Elliott Family Collection, Gift of Douglas Dillon, 1989 (1989.235.1)


Red Frined
Lang Ying (1585-ca. 1664)
Hanging scroll, ink and color on paper
Ex. coll.: C. C. Wang Family
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Earl Morse, in honor of Douglas Dillon, 1979 (1979.26)


Scholar on a Rock
Ren Yi (Ren Bonian; 1840-1896)
Folding fan mounted as an album leaf, ink and color on paper
Gift of Robert Hatfield Ellsworth, in memory of La Ferne Hatfield Ellsworth, 1986 (1986.267.49)


Garden of the Unsuccessful Politician, dated 1551
Wen Zhengming (1470-1559)
Album of eight paintings, ink on paper
Gift of Douglas Dillon, 1979 (1979.458.1)


Rocks in The Astor Court
Southwest corner with Cold Spring Pavilion
(The Astor Court was opened to the public in 1981)
Gift of the Vincent Astor Foundation, 1980


Rocks in The Astor Court
West wall, Taihu rocks and plantings
(The Astor Court was opened to the public in 1981)
Gift of the Vincent Astor Foundation, 1980