scholar and servant walking on shoreline with backs to viewer; servant wears 2 piece outfit and carries lute wrapped in white cloth; scholar walks several paces ahead, wears full length white robe, carrying walking stick; small, bent pine tree at left side; tall pine at right, extending to top of image; water is calm, beach has a few rocks

Visiting a Recluse with a Qin, 13th century

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This painting is traditionally attributed to Ma Lin of the late 13th century. Ma artists evolved a formula for painting wherein the pictorial surface is divided in half diagonally. One side is filled with pictorial motifs, while the other side is left empty to suggest vast space. Here a scholar is shown being followed by his servant who carries a qin (a kind of lute). A feeling of vague melancholy is a hallmark of Ma Lin. Here, the lonely scholar pausing for a moment to enjoy the transient beauty of the mist-filled landscape strikes a poignant chord.

Details
Title
Visiting a Recluse with a Qin
Artist Life
active c. 1180 - after 1256
Role
Artist
Accession Number
2013.34.1
Curator Approved

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scholar and servant walking on shoreline with backs to viewer; servant wears 2 piece outfit and carries lute wrapped in white cloth; scholar walks several paces ahead, wears full length white robe, carrying walking stick; small, bent pine tree at left side; tall pine at right, extending to top of image; water is calm, beach has a few rocks