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Chinese Painting – Chinese Traditional Painting

The term Chinese painting originated in the Han Dynasty and mainly refers to scroll paintings painted on silk, rice paper, and silk and mounted on them. Traditional Chinese painting is a traditional Chinese painting form. It is painted on silk or paper with a brush dipped in water, ink, or color. Tools and materials include brushes, ink, Chinese painting pigments, rice paper, silk, etc. The themes can be divided into characters, landscapes, flowers, and birds, etc. The techniques can be divided into concrete and freehand brushwork. In terms of content and artistic creation, Chinese painting embodies the ancients’ cognition of nature, society, and related political, philosophical, religious, moral, literary, and other aspects.

Chinese Traditional Painting-1



Chinese painting originated in ancient times, and hieroglyphic characters laid the foundation; text and painting were indistinguishable from each other at the beginning, and they originally meant the same thing. China still has the theory that calligraphy and painting are of the same origin. Some people think that Fuxi’s painting of hexagrams and Cangjie’s creation of characters are the first of calligraphy and painting. There is no difference between writing and drawing at the beginning.


Pottery is a product of the Neolithic Age. Pottery is divided into black pottery, white pottery, and colored pottery. On the painted pottery unearthed from Banpo Village in Xi’an, an important Neolithic site, there are painted fish chasing each other and jumping deer. Gansu Yongjing unearthed a clay pot mimic boat, so if we’re on the shore, scene distinctly; there is dancing on color basin on the Qinghai Chase Sunjiazhai found painted three groups of five people to join Tage map, showing The vitality of youth is the source of the study of the history of Chinese painting. In the late Neolithic period, the earliest bronze wares in China were discovered in the cultural sites of Xindian and Longshan. They are artifacts and arts and crafts. The common decorative patterns on bronze ware include Yan Tun pattern, cloud thunder pattern, Kui pattern, dragon pattern, tiger pattern, etc., and the human body is also used as a decorative pattern. Shuangkui’s synthetic grain-tolerant grain, with more curled tails, is very beautiful.


The themes of decorative paintings on bronze objects can be roughly divided into two categories. One is describing the ritual activities in the life of the nobility, such as banquets, shooting rituals, and table sacrifices; such as the “Engraved Copper Mirror” unearthed by Zhao Gu. The ritual activities of the aristocratic life; the other is the image depicting water and land warfare, represented by the ” Water and Land Warfare Pattern ” unearthed in Shanbiao Town. Other Baihuatan bronze pots, and the “Bronze Pot for Banquet” in the Forbidden City all have pictures of war scenes. In these paintings, there are plots such as land and water battles, defense on strong walls, and ground attack by ladders. There is also the depiction of water battles and land battles, showing the details of assault and killing. Some soldiers hold swords and halberds, and some hold warriors and spears. They are vivid. These artistic techniques have greatly inspired and influenced the stone carvings and brick carvings of the Han Dynasty.


Chinese painting has a long history, much in the Warring States period 2,000 years ago appeared painted on silk painting – painting on silk, before that there are primitive rock paintings and pottery painting. The most famous of the Spring and Autumn Period and the Warring States Period is the silk painting of “Royal Dragon Picture”. It is painting on silk fabric. These early paintings laid the foundation for later Chinese paintings to use the line as the main modeling method. During the Han Dynasty and the Wei, Jin, and Southern and Northern Dynasties, the input of foreign cultures and the collision and fusion of local culture made the paintings at this time form a situation dominated by religious paintings. The depiction of local historical figures and literary works also accounted for a certain proportion. Landscape paintings, Flower and bird paintings also sprouted at this time. During the Sui and Tang Dynasties, the social economy and culture were highly prosperous, and painting also showed a situation of overall prosperity. Landscape paintings and flower-and-bird paintings have matured, religious paintings have reached their peak, and secularization has emerged; portrait paintings mainly show the life of aristocrats, and there are figures with characteristics of the times. The Five Dynasties and Song Dynasties have further matured and become more prosperous. Figure paintings have shifted to depicting secular life, religious paintings have gradually declined, and landscape paintings and flower-and-bird paintings have become the mainstream of the painting world. The literati painting appears in its later development greatly enriched the creative concept of Chinese painting and performance methods. In the Yuan, Ming, and Qing Dynasties, ink landscapes and freehand flowers and birds have developed prominently. Literati painting and genre painting have become the mainstream of Chinese painting. With the gradual stabilization of society and economy, the field of culture and art has unprecedented prosperity, and many great painters who love life and advocate art have emerged. Painters of the past dynasties have created famous paintings that have been handed down through the ages.

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The painting genres of the Ming Dynasty were varied, each leading the style. Through a series of political and economic reforms in the early Ming Dynasty, the monarch provided a guarantee for the unification of the country, social stability, and the recovery and development of productive forces. In the Jiajing and Wanli years of the Ming Dynasty, the economy and culture tended to prosper and the productivity level had reached the peak of feudal society. Traditional scientific and technological achievements have been gradually summarized, and contain factors that move toward modern times; the ideological and cultural fields are splendid and prosperous, and new changes have occurred.


The painting circle of the Ming Dynasty continued to evolve and develop along with the changes that had been presented in the Yuan Dynasty. The literati paintings and genre paintings became a torrent and formed many genres; landscape, flower, and birds themes were popular, and figure paintings declined; the continuous innovation of ink and wash techniques further enriched the ability of pen and ink expression; The purpose emphasizes more on expressing subjective interest, and pursuing the charm of pen and ink. In the early period of Ming Dynasty painting, there were literati paintings that inherited the ink painting method of the Yuan Dynasty; court “court style” paintings; and “Zhe School” paintings founded by Dai Jin and Wu Wei. Representative painters are Liu Jun, Ni Duan, Shang Xi, Xie Huan, Li Zai, Bian Jingzhao, Lu Ji, Lin Liang, Dai Jin, Wu Wei, Zhang Lu. In the mid-Ming Dynasty painting, the “Four Wu Schools” emerged in Suzhou. Shen Zhou and Wen Zhengming formed the powerful “Wu School Painting School”, which promoted the tradition of literati painting. Tang Yin and Qiu Ying took the advantage of “court style” and literati painting to form New look. Representative painters are Zhou Chen, Shen Zhou, Wen Zhengming, Tang Yin, Qiu Ying, Wen Jia. In the late Ming Dynasty painting, landscape painting became the mainstream, and freehand flower and bird painting by literati also developed rapidly, led by the Women School of Painting. Representative painters are Zhang Hong, Xu Wei, Chen Chun, Lan Ying, Xiang Shengmo, Wu Bin, Ding Yunpeng, Chen Hongshou, Cui Zizhong, Zeng Jing.


Since the Tang and Song Dynasties, the painter’s innovation in traditional Chinese painting has continued to this day, innovating styles on the basis of inheritance. In the Ming Dynasty, the “Wu Men Painting School” with shining stars not only represented the highest level of Ming Dynasty painting but also opened up a new river for future generations in the exploration of learning from ancient times and innovation. In the later period of the Wu School, Suzhou painters, represented by Zhang Hong, took a different approach in literati landscape painting and created paintings full of life. On the basis of inheriting the style and characteristics of Women’s painting school, they innovated and went to the mountains to sketch from nature. They learned from the natural destiny and created paintings full of life, which reflected the extraordinary spiritual realm in the paintings. The picture is fresh and elegant, and the artistic conception is empty and clear.




Chinese paintings are mainly divided into figures, flowers and birds, and landscapes. On the surface, Chinese paintings are divided into these categories based on themes, but in fact, they use art to express a concept and thought. The so-called “painting divided into three subjects” summarizes the three aspects of the universe and life: figure paintings show the human society and the relationship between people; landscape paintings show the relationship between man and nature, integrating man and nature As a whole; flower-and-bird paintings express the various life of nature and live in harmony with people. The reason why Chinese painting is divided into the categories of figures, flowers and birds and landscapes is actually the philosophical thinking of art sublimation. The combination of the three forms the whole of the universe and complements each other, which is the essence of art as art.


To appreciate Chinese landscape painting, you must first understand the mind and image of the producer of the Chinese painting. The painter stores the characteristics of the famous mountains and rivers in his heart and then forms them in his hands. Therefore, it is not better to use “shaw shape”, but to “communicate meaning”. One tree, one stone, one platform, and one pavilion can all represent the artist’s mood. Don’t worry about display issues such as perspective ratio.


There are many types of animals, of different sizes. Lions, tigers, cats, and dogs can be called beasts, all kinds of fish can be called swimming fish, cicadas, butterflies, and dragonflies are called insects, and all kinds of birds are called feathers. Animals can be classified as flower and bird paintings.

bird and flower



It can be divided into two categories: ancient and modern: costume figures, or heroes of the past dynasties; modern clothing, or model sketches. Because characters must have movements and expressions, figure painting is a more esoteric production.

According to production skills and brushwork, Chinese painting can be divided into fine brushwork, freehand brushwork, and part-time work with writing.


Made with meticulous brushwork, Gongbi painting emphasizes the beauty of lines and is meticulous, which is the characteristic of Gongbi painting.


Feelings of the soul and the pens are free to walk, which are regarded as freehand brushes. Freehand painting does not pay attention to lines and images, which is contrary to the fine brushwork. Vivid is often better than the former.

According to the content of the picture, it can be divided into traditional painting and modern painting.


The age of Chinese painting has been thousands of years, and it has formed a set of fixed patterns such as brushwork, composition, and painting. Therefore, Chinese painting with this style is called a traditional painting.


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