Chinese Rock Garden, Date Unknown

Unknown artist, expand_more


Gift of Ruth and Bruce Daytonexpand_more  98.61.5

Not on Viewexpand_more

Strangely shaped rocks are an important physical and symbolic element in Chinese gardens. The pores, holes and strange forms of these limestone rocks were naturally molded through erosion by flowing water and acidic soil. These rocks are called Taihu because those produced at the foot of Dongting Mountain in Suzhou near the Taihu Lake are the most well-known. The Taihu rock became an important component of Chinese gardens since the Northern Song dynasty (960–1127). The more eccentric the rock, the more it was prized. The Chinese fascination with the strange, the bizarre, and the extraordinary shape of such rocks came not only from the qualities denoting individuality and originality, but also from the resemblance of their forms to the sacred mountains in people’s imagination. One of the major elements of Chinese culture has always been the reverence of great mountains as the embodiment of mysterious power.

Chinese Rock Garden
Accession Number
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