Like many professional painters trained in family workshops, Lan Meng carried on the style established by his famous father, Lan Ying (1585–ca. 1664). Lan Meng also adopted his father’s practice of painting in the mode of old masters. The inscription at the top right states that Lan Meng based this work on a painting by Wang Wei (699–759), the Tang dynasty poet-painter whom the Orthodox School considered the fountainhead of the literati painting tradition. Lan’s take on Wang Wei’s style is big and bombastic, full of broadly brushed strokes. The addition of color and white to indicate snow is a bold interpretation and one that might have been considered over-the-top by contemporaries like Wang Jian and Wang Shimin.
Inscription: Artist’s inscription and signature (3 columns in semi-cursive script)
Xihu Lan Meng 西湖藍孟 Cigong shi 次公氏
John and Lili Bussel Family , New York (until 1996; donated to MMA)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Art of the Brush: Chinese Painting and Calligraphy," March 12, 2005–August 14, 2005.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Arts of the Ming Dynasty: China's Age of Brilliance," January 23, 2009–September 13, 2009.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Art of the Chinese Album," September 6, 2014–March 29, 2015.