Formerly Attributed to Jiangcan (Chinese, active ca. 1200)
Song dynasty (960–1279)
Handscroll; ink on paper
12 1/2 x 87 5/16 in. (31.8 x 221.8 cm)
Rogers Fund, 1918
Not on view
Signature: .Artist's seal (?) on lower right corner, damaged and unreadable
Inscription: One poem dated 1495; one seal of Wu Zongzhou (act. early 16th century); one colophon, three seals of Wangxün; one poem, two seals of Yetong; one colophon dated 1670 of Zhuan Zhunsheng (1627–1679).
Translation: 1. Cows grazing were familiar to me. Boys with books ride on the backs of cows which wander about in the fields; some bulls are fighting; old cows chew grass; some moo calmly while others frisk about. When anyone sees this picture he may think of the olden days. The fighting, grazing and all the other phases of cows' life are very well painted. The atmosphere of peace and tranquility are very well expressed in this picture. [written by Wang Xün]
2. In this picture are represented grasses, villages in the mist and rain; far away and near the low sounds of a flute played by a boy on the back of a cow float about although they are not classical notes; old cows look back for their calves. Cowboys do not whip them nor treat them hard. One cow may plough as much as one hundred men can do, and a hundred cows will give enough food for thousands of people. A wise magistrate will get out of his car and compose a poem to praise the virtues of cows. I, Ye Tong put this down.
3. I don't know who painted this picture of a hundred cows. Skins and bones are represented in one and the same touch of the brush. The mist blends with the grass. The lake is full of water and haze. Boys carry their hats, raincoats and food. Each one amuses himeself as he likes. I, Zongzhou wrote this down in the year of the Rabbit, of the reign of Hongzhi, 1495.
[ Vladmir G. Simkhovitch , 1918; sold to MMA]
Cleveland Museum of Art. "Chinese Art Under the Mongols," October 1, 1968–November 4, 1968.
New York. Asia House Gallery. "Chinese Art Under the Mongols," January 9, 1969–February 2, 1969.