Orchid Pavilion Gathering：A Chinese Yishui Inkstone Carved Landscape and People
Lot No. ：MSF-YS-191211
Feature："Orchid Pavilion Gathering"(1*), Yinshui Inkstone (2*), size 30.5x19.7x8.5cm, Ancient Chinese sculpture art(2*), handmade. The rectangular stone is carved on the top with figures at the Orchid Pavilion, surrounding the inkwell carved and pierced in the form of a flowing stream and a flat irregularly-shaped palette. The four sides are carved in low relief with further scenes from the Orchid Pavilion Gathering, depicting scholars at leisure in a lush bamboo grove by the riverside. The underside is carved in relief with geese in a pond.
Status：For sale (Item is customizable)
1* The Orchid Pavilion Gathering of 353 CE, also known as the Lanting Gathering, was a cultural and poetic event during the Six Dynasties era, in China. This event itself has a certain inherent and poetic interest in regard to the development of landscape poetry and the philosophical ideas of Zhuangzi. The gathering at the Orchid Pavilion is also famous for the artistry of the calligraphy of Wang Xizhi, who was both one of the participants as well as the author and calligrapher of the Lantingji Xu or Preface to the Poems Composed at the Orchid Pavilion, not to mention the literary mastery of this introduction. The Orchid Pavilion Gathering of 42 literati included Xie An and Sun Chuo and Wang Pin-Chih at the Orchid Pavilion (Lanting) on Mount Kuaiji just south of Kuaiji (present-day Shaoxing in Zhejiang), during the Spring Purification Festival, on the third day of the third month, to compose poems and enjoy huangjiu. The gentlemen had engaged in a drinking contest: rice-wine cups were floated down a small winding creek as the men sat along its banks; whenever a cup stopped, the man closest to the cup was required to empty it and write a poem. This was known as "floating goblets" (流觴, liúshāng). In the end, twenty-six of the participants composed thirty-seven poems.
2* The inkstone is one of the four treasures of a calligrapher’s studio (aside from brush paper and ink), although it is used in ink painting as well. Its history goes back to the New Stone Age era, 5000 to 6000 years ago, when various pigments were used to decorate pottery and other objects. The first inkstone was nothing but a pigment mortar composed of a grinding surface and a grinding rod. The inkstone is the most important treasure of the study. It is also the only one that if taken care of properly will last for millennia. The inkstone is considered to be the soul and core of a scholar’s room.
Duanshi stone (端石砚) from Duanxi, Guangdong (pictured at top). Duan stone is a volcanic tuff, commonly of a purple to a purple-red color. There are various distinctive markings such as eyes that were traditionally valued in the stone. A green variety of the stone was mined in the Song period. Duan inkstones are carefully categorized by the mines (k'eng) from which the raw stone was excavated. Particular mines were open only for discrete periods in history. For example, the Mazukeng mine was originally opened in the Qianlong period (1736-1795), although reopened in modern times.
2* Ancient Chinese sculptures, the essence of ancient Chinese arts, have attained great achievements in different sculpture branches and different historical periods. They are rich in subject matter and diversified in style, presenting strong and vivid flavor of the country as well as the age. For instance, the sculptures in the Qin and Han Dynasties are rough and sturdy, the sculptures in the Wei and Jin Dynasties are vigorous and graceful, and the sculptures in Tang and Song Dynasties are rich and elegant. The ancient Chinese sculptures are also full of expressionistic spirit. They are not accustomed to the surface work or the details, but stress on the feeling and artistic conception implied by the imagination-triggering image, which is able to lead people to another artistic world.
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