Paintings on fans are very unique genre in traditional Chinese art. It is believed that as early as the 3rd century artists decorated fans for the elite. There are two types of painted fans in China. The first is Tuanshan, meaning piece of silk in a round or ovoid shape inside a frame attached to a bamboo or wooden handle. Whilst this type appeared earlier it became very popular in the Tang-Song dynasties (7-13 century). The second type is called Zheshan, a folding fan, probably introduced to China from Japan in 10th century. By the 14th century it had become a favourite media for many famous painters and calligraphers who took on the challenge of producing exquisite paintings and calligraphy within the restricted space of the fan. These days they have become a popular item of appreciation by literati and collectors of Chinese paintings and calligraphy.
Yang Borun, a native of Jiaxing, Zhejiang province, was a famous painter and calligrapher of the Shanghai school in late Qing dynasty. His other alias and style names include Peifu (佩夫 or 佩甫)，Chachan 茶禪 or Chachan jushi 茶禪居士， Nanhu 南湖 or Nanhu waishi 南湖外史. His calligraphy and painting follow the styles of great masters, such as Yan Zhenqin (709 -785) and Mi Fu (1051-1107), and Dong Qichang (1555-1636).
Asian Art Department, AGNSW, April 2013.
Place where the work was made
Qing dynasty 1644 - 1911 → China
folding fan mounted as album leaf; ink and colour on paper
24.5 x 53.5 cm image
Signature & date
Signed and dated 1900 "Painted after the brush idea of Mojing Daoren [Mojing Daoren is a style made popular by Wu Li (1632-1718) who was a famous Qing dynasty landscape painter] at the request of my dear friend Mr Yunshen in March, spring of year gengzi (1900) by Nanhu Yang Borun."
Gift of Edmund Capon AM, OBE 2013