The essay "Text and Image in Landscape Painting" discovers the nature of painting and analyzes text and image in landscape painting. This silk panel is filled with intricate detail, while it retains the impressionistic character of Chinese silk paintings. The brush techniques used allow the deposit of varying amounts of ink from different parts of the brush. The technique took many years of practice to perfect, especially in consideration of the medium and the canvas: ink from solid sticks and silk. The brushes were very soft and it was difficult to learn to control them. One can imagine that many many practice paintings were done before the various techniques were mastered. Chinese silk painting is not an art one can master overnight. It is easy to believe that the artists of the day, including Guo Xi, did extensive travel in order to investigate all the various landscapes around, and then, having once chosen one to paint, spent hours, or even days, contemplating the scene they were going to paint. It is obvious at close inspection that there are many layers to this painting, and knowing the characteristics of the block ink, it had to be done slowly, a little at a time. We can imagine that the artist applied layer after layer of almost transparent ink before daring to add any details with a drier brush. Guo Xi’s document begins with an appreciation of what such paintings can do for busy men, especially rulers and others with heavy responsibility. He also talks about the responsibility of the artist.
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The essay explores the nature of painting and analyzes text and image in landscape painting. In first looking at this painting, one is struck by its history and serene beauty. Without knowing its age, one can assume a long history by the colors and techniques…
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