Circular fan-shaped album leaf; ink and color on silk
Diam. 10 1/4 in. (26 cm)
Gift of Robert Hatfield Ellsworth, in memory of La Ferne Hatfield Ellsworth, 1986
Not on view
Xu Hao regularly painted subjects from popular literature, using a figure style based on Chen Hongshou. In this round fan, he brings down to earth the Song Neo-Confucian philosopher Zhou Dunyi (1017–73), author of the famous essay Admiring Lotus (1063).
In this painting, Zhou Dunyi holds a fan like the one the shape of the pictures imitates. There is no mark along the centerline of the painting to indicate that the picture ever served as an actual fan, but the consonance of round forms in lotus leaves, fan and format is pleasing.
Signature: Pingqiao Xu Hao, painted at Shanghai Undated
Artist's seal: Pingqiao (square, white characters)
Artist's inscription: Dedicated to Weilian
Marking: Collectors' seals: Robert Hatfield Ellsworth
Robert H. Ellsworth , New York (until 1986; donated to MMA)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Painting: Selections from the Robert H. Ellsworth Collection," February 2, 1988–September 25, 1988.