A Short History of Chinese Art - download pdf or read online

By Michael Sullivan

This e-book preserves the continual narrative framework of the authors prior advent to chinese language paintings. just a commonly old technique, he feels, one that combines vertical continuity down the a long time with horizontal wholeness throughout every one interval, permits the reader, maybe drawing close chinese language artwork for the 1st time, to get a glimpse of the full trend. yet whereas the form of the ebook continues to be unchanged the textual content has been widely revised and re-written to maintain it so far as attainable abreast of contemporary discoveries and examine, and lots of of the illustrations are new. structure, sculpture, portray and calligraphy, bronzes, ceramics and the ornamental arts are all mentioned and on the topic of each other and to the evolving trend of chinese language proposal and social lifestyles.

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In the perfection of their craftsman- immense power of Shang bronzes must rank as their form and decoration, the one of the great artistic triumphs of The zoomorphic motifs which adorn them and intense vitality may seem to be innumerable, but early civilization. give them are for the elements deer, their most part variations — notably the owl, parrot, tiger, fish, and combinations of the same few the water-buflFalo, elephant, hare, cicada, and possibly the silkworm. Occasionally in a frieze around an otherwise plain vessel these creatures may be represented naturalistically, but far more often they are so stylized as to be barely recognizable: their bodies dissolve, their limbs break sprouting other creatures.

That gap, however, is being bridged by recent discoveries. Certain types of Neolithic pottery of the grey family can Dynasty, where we see them now be existing side 47 traced into the Shang by side with the same THE SHANG DYNASTY shapes in bronze, and we can observe form becomes inelegant We object of beauty. how an originally coarse and hands of the metal-worker an in the have already encountered the Neolithic pottery, while finds at Chengchow li tripod in reveal the ceramic origin of several other vessels previously thought to be pectdiar to bronze — notably the kuei, a bowl on a high foot-rim, but lacking the prominent handles found on the bronze kuei.

The k*ou-tien, northwest of Peking, Dr It 1 92 1 that positive evidence was found that China had and to the eventual discovery by bones which, with the exception of erectus^ were the oldest human The bones were those of a hominid, Sinanthropus pekinensis, who lived in the middle Pleistocene period, about half a million years ago. The remains in the largest cave, fifty metres thick, represent many thousands of years of occupation. Peking Man had tools of quartz, flint and limestone, made either late Java Man, Pithecanthropus remains yet discovered.

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A Short History of Chinese Art by Michael Sullivan


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