Bamboo in Moonlight

월하묵죽도 (月下墨竹圖)

Painting only: 85.2 x 33.5 cm (33 9/16 x 13 3/16 in.); Overall: 163 x 43.2 cm (64 3/16 x 17 in.)
Location: not on view
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This painting is currently in the Korean art collection, but some stylistic features suggest that it may be Japanese.


This painting depicts the full moon shining through a stand of bamboo, and for Joseon literati it would have conveyed the sense of life in harmony with nature to which they aspired. As one of the "four gentlemen" along with plum trees, orchids, and chrysanthemums, bamboo, which has immense flexibility, allowing it bent to extremes without breaking—symbolize a gentleman's noble virtue. Here, the painter depicted the shining moon rising above a bamboo tree to create a meditative nightly scene.
Bamboo in Moonlight

Bamboo in Moonlight


Korea, Joseon dynasty (1392–1910)

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