Hanging scroll; ink and color on silk
Overall: 268.2 x 66 cm (105 9/16 x 26 in.); Painting only: 165.3 x 64 cm (65 1/16 x 25 3/16 in.); Overall with knobs: 268.2 x 74.1 cm (105 9/16 x 29 3/16 in.)
Mr. and Mrs. William H. Marlatt Fund 1961.90
Xu Jingyang, wearing red, is in the upper register of figures, while below his servants transport a rooster, dog, and other supplies.
Xu Jingyang was a dedicated fourth-century Confucian official who allegedly turned into a Daoist immortal. This scroll depicts the legend that when he attained immortality, he took his entire household, including chickens and dogs, to paradise.
Cui Zizhong’s painting style intentionally referenced ancient masters. Typical of the pre-Song dynasty landscape tradition, there is the use of blue and green colors and an emphasis on outline rather than texture. While the trembling outlines are reminiscent of earlier painters, the flickering light on rocks and trees is a stylistic feature of Cui’s own time.
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