Su Shi Losing His Girdle

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Su Shi Losing His Girdle (蘇軾留帶圖)

Cui Zizhong (崔子忠, 1574-1644), Ming Dynasty (1368-1644)

Hanging scroll, ink and color on paper, 81.4 x 50 cm, National Palace Museum, Taipei

       Cui Zizhong was a native of Beijing. His style names were Kaiyu (開予) and Daomu (道母); his sobriquets were Beihai (北海) and Qingyin (青蚓). Excelling in figure painting, Cui Zizhong and Chen Hongshou (陳洪綬, 1599-1652) were equally famous during the 17th century. Su Shi (蘇軾, 1037–1101) once made a wager with Foyin (佛印), a monk who lived in the Jinshan Temple (金山寺). When Su Shi lost the wager, he had to forfeit his girdle. The painting illustrates this famous story. A thatched cottage emerges from the mists of a wintry grove. Su Shi and Foyin are seated opposite each other talking. The artist’s use of brush and ink is elegant and bland.

Cui Zizhong: Su Shi Losing His Girdle