The practice of imitating the work of the masters was to acquire the brush techniques and methods of the ancient masters as the basis for new creative work-an act of establishing spiritual communion with the ancient masters. Zhu Da, in his inscription, acknowledges that this painting was done after the early Song master Guo Zhongshu 郭忠恕. Despite this artistic claim, there is almost no tangible stylistic relation to be found between Zhu Da and his 10th-century model. This painting reveals the vigorous force of the artist's own individual approach and a stylistic reference to Dong Qichang.
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