INTRO BY COLIN MCKENZIE    Book Number: 84847    Product format: Hardback

The unprecedented and often provocative juxtapositions of the 300 works represented here echo the complexity, diversity, richness and modernity of Chinese art. For more than four millennia, dynasties rose and fell, and the influxes of foreign populations contributed to the changing face of Chinese civilisation and the creation of some of the world's most beautiful art. Here are ancient bronzes and jades, ceramics, ivory-coloured porcelains, court artists who explored new types of landscape compositions and brushwork styles using ink play, 'writing ideas' and literati painters who frequently inscribed their paintings with poems or personal commentaries. Four in particular were Wu Zhen (page 293), Huang Gongwan (page 258), Ni Zan (page 199) and Wang Meng (page 168) with his views of streams and mountains on hand scrolled ink and colour on silk hangings. A gilded bronze of the Buddha from the 3rd century AD from Western Jin sits opposite an oil painting from 1976 where a group of Tibetans gather in a cornfield listening to the radio that is broadcasting the news of Chairman Mao's death. On the far right a man stands with his clenched fist a short distance from his dagger, suggesting suppressed violence towards the regime. A large red harvester serves as a reminder of the Communist Party's presence and political control. There is a superb infusion of humanism into this realist oil painting. Every form of Chinese visual art is featured - painting, calligraphy, sculpture, ceramics, figurines, jades, bronzes, gold and silver, photography, video, installation and performance art produced in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and the West. The Introduction offers a learned summary of Chinese political and cultural history and a comprehensive glossary defines technical terms. An illustrated timeline places each of the 300 works in its chronological sequence in a book full of surprises with this unique arrangement by pairing works that speak to one another in unexpected historical, stylistic and cultural ways. A visually exciting Phaidon art publication of the highest quality, first time discounted. 350 very large glossy pages. 10" x 11½".
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Published price: £39.95
Bibliophile price: £19.00

Additional product information

ISBN 9780714865751
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