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Calligrapher Wen Zhengming Chinese

Not on view

明 文徴明 行書自書詩 卷 紙本

The dean of the Suzhou cultural scene during the sixteenth century, Wen Zhengming was admired in equal measure for his painting and calligraphy. In calligraphy, his reserved personality found form in stable compositions and elegantly smooth brushwork that was accomplished but never showy. In this scroll, written in the prime of his career, he transcribed nearly twenty of his own poems in his celebrated semicursive script. While the subtly nuanced poems attest to his stature as a leader of the local literate elite, the calligraphy embodies the ideal union of virtuosity and grace.

Poems, Wen Zhengming (Chinese, 1470–1559), Handscroll; ink on paper, China

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