Folding fan mounted as an album leaf; ink on gold paper
Image: 6 3/4 x 20 1/4 in. (17.1 x 51.4 cm)
John Stewart Kennedy Fund, 1913
Not on view
One of the most influential flower painters of the Ming dynasty, Chen Chun was also a gifted calligrapher specializing in free-flowing running and cursive scripts. While maintaining remarkable control of columnar spacing and the brush's natural fluctuation, his writing exudes great energy. Having internalized the disciplined stylistic features of both Zhu Yunming (1461–1527) and Wen Zhengming (1470–1559), he cultivated a deliberate casualness that avoided pointed references to earlier masters. Here, his rhythmic brushstrokes echo the cheerful mood of the poem:
This year the double ninth is exceedingly bright and clear. Regrettably, the hermit is not in the mountain. My white hair is only good for being covered by my tattered hat; The yellow flowers are still willing to light my withered countenance. Thoughts of distant friends increase my sorrow; But I rejoice that nearby fishermen still come and go. At leisure, I take up a cup to toast the season; Would that these happy moments pass more slowly!
(trans. adapted from Tseng Yu-ho Ecke)
Signature: Signed: Daofu Artist's seal: "Furuzi", following signature No date
A poem executed in Draft script: This year and double nine is exceedingly bright and clear. Regrettably, the hermit is not in the mountains. My white hair is only good for being covered by my tattered hat; The yellow flowers are still willing to light my withered countenance. Far off, the thought of my friends increases my sorrow. Nearby, I rejoice that the fishermen still come by. At leisure, I take up a cup to toast the season; Would that these happy moments move more slowly! On the ninth day I drank by myself and wrote this in moods.
Inscription: Artist’s inscription and signature (13 columns in semi-cursive script)