宗炳 “畫山水序” “Theory about Landscape Painting” by Zong Bing | 王冬龄 Wang Dongling
王冬齡 Wang Dongling
Four Pages of Small-character Cursive Script, Ink on Paper
13.5 x 21.5 cm (4) / 5.3 x 8.5 in (4)
This work is a draft of the video installation work,” Guanshan Gathering” by Wang Donglin and Zheng Shengtian. The content is "The Preface to Painting Landscape " by Zong Bing, a painter and art theorist during the Southern Song Dynasty (375-443). "The Preface to Painting Landscapes" is known as one of the earliest theoretical articles in the history of Chinese art, and the modern art educator Chen Chuanxi describes it as “the earliest theoretical work of Chinese landscape painting in pre-modern time.”
Although the length of the whole essay is just a few hundreds of words, throughout history it has become the theoretical basis followed by many landscape painters for thousands of years, and it is also the spiritual indexes of Chinese literati painting. In pre-modern time, the Chinese calligraphy and Chinese painting were described as “from the same origin.” This calligraphy works by Wang Dongling portrays the spirits of “harmonious association between human and nature,” which is known as the essence of the “Preface of Landscape Painting” and Chinese landscape painting.
In 2014, Zheng Shengtian invited Wang Dongling to write “The Preface of Painting Landscapes” with ink on top of the specially made canvas and videotaped the whole process into a comprehensive video installation. The incompatible while lingering relationship between the ink and canvas, symbolizes the dilemma of dialogue between Eastern and Western cultures. This work is a draft written by Wang Dongling for the installation.