(China 1801–post 1860)
a - Part a; 24.5 x 27cm; image; 33.5 x 46.0cm overall
b - Part b; 25 x 27cm; image; 33.8 x 46.1cm
c - Part c; 25 x 27.4cm; image; 33.7 x 46.2cm (overall)
d - Part d; 25 x 27.3cm; image; 33.8 x 46.0cm
DAI Xi (1801-1860), a native of Qiantang (present day Hangzhou), was a Chinese painter of the 19th century and representative of the academic manner. His sobriquet was Chunshi and his pen name was Yu'an, among others. In 1832 he joined officialdom, becoming a member of the Hanlin Academy. He later became Vice Minister of the Ministry of War, although absenting himself later for illness. In 1860, during the Taiping Rebellion, Hangzhou was occupied by the rebels. Dai joined in the defense of the city and later committed suicide by drowning himself in a pond. Dai was subsequently given the posthumous title Wenjie or 'Cultured and Moderate'.
DAI Xi painted in the manner of the great academic master WANG Hui (1632-1717) of the previous century, although DAI Xi was said to have exceeded the master in artistic elegance. His work is similar to that of his contemporary TANG Yifen (1778-1853) and together they were referred to as "Tang-Dai". Dai’s works are usually landscapes. His works include a generous mixture of genre subjects such as plants and humans.
Asian Art Department, AGNSW, June 2011