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QI BAISHI (1863-1957)
QI BAISHI (1863-1957)

Houses Among the Mountains

QI BAISHI (1863-1957)
Houses Among the Mountains
Inscribed and signed, with one seal of the artist
Dedicated to Leng'an (Hu Peiheng, 1892-1965)
Fan leaf, mounted and framed, ink and colour on paper
19 x 56 cm. (7 1/2 x 22 in.)
20th Century
Collection of Paintings by Qi Baishi (Part I), Beijing People's Fine Art Publishing House, 2008, pp.66-67, pl.19.

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Lot Essay

At the beginning of the 20th century when Chinese ink painting was at its prime, there were great artists in Beijing, such as Xiao Sun, Chen Banding, Hu Peiheng, Chen Shizeng, and Qi Baishi. Having imitated ancient works and studied paintings by Wang Jian and Wang Hui in his early years, Xiao Sun not only sought to create a quaint atmosphere through authentic brushwork, but also to develop a new look for modern ink paintings by overlapping the mountains and rivers through the use of accumulated-ink method.

In 1929, Qi Baishi resolutely broke away from ancient landscape paintings and formed his own unique style. Although his style was not popular at that time, he was not willing to conform to others, which reflected his pride. Only Hu Peiheng loved his unique landscape paintings; therefore, Qi wrote inscriptions on many of his works expressing his gratefulness to his soul mate. Qi inscribed on this painting, "Please reasonably comment on this, Brother Leng'an. Don't make Longqiao laugh at me when he sees it." Leng'an is Hu Peiheng, while Longqiao is Xiao Sun. Although the painting style of Qi Baishi differed from that of Xiao Sun, one can see that Qi respected Xiao Sun just as his respect to Hu Peiheng, as expressed through these inscriptions.

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