WU GUANZHONG (1919-2010)
WU GUANZHONG (1919-2010)
WU GUANZHONG (1919-2010)
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WU GUANZHONG (1919-2010)

Woods and a Spring

WU GUANZHONG (1919-2010)
Woods and a Spring
Scroll, mounted and framed, ink and colour on paper
136.3 x 67.3 cm. (53 3/8 x 26 1/2 in.)
Signed, with two seals of the artist
Sotheby’s Hong Kong, Fine Chinese Paintings, 7 April 2014, Lot 1169.
Art of Wu Guanzhong - 60’s-90’s, Three Gorges Publishing House, September 1996, p. 18, pl. 6.
The Complete Works of Wu Guanzhong Vol. V, Hunan Fine Arts Publishing House, August 2007, p. 212.
The Paintings of Wu Guanzhong, vol. I, Jiangxi Fine Arts Publishing House, March 2008, p. 29.
Sale room notice
Please note the correct pagination of the Art of Wu Guanzhong – 60’s-90’s is page 18, plate 6.

Brought to you by

Carmen Shek Cerne (石嘉雯)
Carmen Shek Cerne (石嘉雯) Vice President, Head of Department, Chinese Paintings

Lot Essay

Wu Guanzhong’s ink paintings reached full maturity in the 1980s. After years of sketching all over China, Wu gathered a vast array of inspirations and intriguing subjects that he expressed in his diverse works throughout that decade. Although the artist did not specify the location of “Woods and a Spring,” one can easily guess from Wu’s footprints during his many sketching trips. Wu Guanzhong loved nature and was passionate about old trees, forests, and springs. His trips to Mount Wuyi, Hainan Island, Gulangyu, and Xishuangbanna allowed him to capture different types of trees in full vivacity under his brush. His artistic expression echoes the tradition of Chinese ink painting and acts as the artist’s spiritual sanctuary.

In this particular work, Wu Guanzhong depicts the forests of southern China. The towering and majestic old trees rise from the bottom, exuding a sense of monumentality similar to that seen in Northern Song dynasty landscape paintings. Wu’s confident and carefree brushwork is evident in the intertwining tree trunks and vines, colourful dots, ink lines, and planes. A quiet stream flows from the bottom left corner of the composition, instilling a sense of tranquillity and translucency, which balances the very dense and dynamic composition. Woods and a Spring encapsulates Wu’s interests in sketching and abstraction and is undoubtedly a representative masterpiece from the 1980s.

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