In Episode 208 Pro – Shrines of the Living Land, we continue our exploration of space, place and sacred paradox by considering the religious symbolism and themes of Chinese landscape (shan-shui) painting. Taoist themes of immortality, wise innocence, active non-action and the harmony of the natural world find their expression in the wild mountainous landscapes of artists through the centuries. We delve into the history, symbols and methods of painting as an example of crafting sacred space through which wandering sages seek enlightenment.
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- To learn more about Chinese landscape painting, check out some of these texts:
- Theories of the Arts in China, editors Susan Bush and Christian Murck
- Landscape and Memory, by Simon Schama
- Along the Border of Heaven: Sung and Yüan Paintings from the C.C. Wang Family Collection, by Richard M. Barnhart
- Taoism: Growth of a Religion, by Isabelle Robinet
- Excerpts from Wucius Wong’s text, The Tao of Landscape Painting can be found online here.
- Detail of landscape by Wu Pin (source)
Tags: aesthetics, art, Chinese landscape painting, paradox, sacred space, spirituality, Taoism, wu-wei, yin-yang