Autumn Colors at Xunyang

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Artist: Lu Zhi 陸治 (1495-1576)
Calligrapher: Colophon by Wen Peng (1498-1573)
Historical period(s)
Ming dynasty, 1554
Ink and color on paper
H x W (image): 22.3 x 100.1 cm (8 3/4 x 39 7/16 in)
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view


autumn, boat, China, lute, Ming dynasty (1368 - 1644), music, pipa, river, shore, tree, WWII-era provenance
Provenance research underway.

Lu Zhi was a pupil of Wen Zhengming (1470-1559), one of the Four Masters of Ming-the dynasty's premier landscape artists. The autumn colors in the left half of the painting echo the melancholy mood of the well-known poem this painting depicts. The Lute Song, written in 816 by the Tang poet Bai Juyi (772-846), describes the virtuoso lute performance of a former courtesan whom Bai chanced to meet in a boat ride on the Xunyang River. The poignant story of the courtesan's life touched Bai deeply, reminding him of his own plight as an exile, banished from the capital for his criticisms of government policies.

Published References
  • S. Wilkinson. Lu Chih's Views on Landscape. vol. 15, no. 1 London, Spring 1969. fig. 10.
  • Suzuki Kei. Chugoku kaiga sogo zuroku [Comprehensive Illustrated Catalog of Chinese Painting]. 5 vols., Tokyo, 1982-1983. vol. 1 (1982 ed.): pp. 234-235.
  • Suzuki Kei. On Two Landscape Picture-Scrolls by Lu Chih. no. 575 Tokyo. .
  • Osvald Siren. Chinese Painting: Leading Masters and Principles. 7 vols., New York and London, 1956-1958. vol. 6: pl. 250.
  • James Cahill. Parting at the Shore: Chinese Paintings of the Early and Middle Ming Dynasty, 1368-1580., 1st ed. New York. pl. 121.
  • Dr. John Alexander Pope, Thomas Lawton, Harold P. Stern. The Freer Gallery of Art. 2 vols., Washington and Tokyo, 1971-1972. cat. 68, vol. 1: p. 168.
  • Pang Yuanji. Hsu chai ming hua lu: Catalogue of Chinese Paintings in the Collection of the Author. Shanghai. p. 3.
  • Suzuki Kei. Sansuiga : Chugoku [Landscape Painting: China]. Tokyo. p. 36, fig. 68a.
  • Katharine P. Burnett. Shaping Chinese Art History: Pang Yuanji and His Painting Collection. Cambria Sinophone World Series Amherst, New York, September 28, 2020. 46.
  • Paul Allan Berry. Tanomura Chikuden 1777-1835: Man Amidst the Mountains. 4 vols. Ann Arbor. p. 84.
  • James Cahill. Chinese Painting. Treasures of Asia Geneva and Cleveland. p. 133.
  • Olympiada Galerkina. Originalite et emprunts traditionnels dans la miniature de Maverannachre. vol. 32 Paris. pp. 189-194, pl. 1a.
  • Sherman Lee. Some Problems in Ming and Ch'ing Landscape Painting. vol. 2 Washington and Ann Arbor. pp. 471-485, pls. 10, 11.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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