Thursday, 16 April 2009

Wild Geese Descending to Sandbar, Chosôn dynasty (1392–1910)Unidentified artist (late 15th–16th century)KoreaThe title identifies the work as one of the Eight Views of the Xiao and Xiang Rivers, a poetic theme traditionally associated with the Northern Song painter Song Di

This painting takes as its inspiration a poem, inscribed in Chinese characters in the upper right corner after the four-character title:

On the frozen frontier is a hail of arrows,

Along the Golden River [Jinhe] there are no rice fields.

Brothers one and all, flying down in skeins,

After ten thousand li, they arrive at Xiao and Xiang.

The distant waters shine like reels of silk

The level sands are white as glinting frost

.At the ferry quay, no one is about,

Close to the setting sun, the geese descend ever more gracefully.

(Translation by Roderick Whitfield)–ca.

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