The art of calligraphy is often compared to swordsmanship. Each stroke the artist makes with the brush is accurate, pre-meditated and well known. Therefore, in order to master this form of art, one must devote himself, practice for years upon years and undergo meditation, preparation and indefatigable repetition.
At the moment the artist (the fencer) decides to make his move he ought to be decisive and well prepared.
the brush is made out of horse hair, during history were used different kinds of “paper”- starting from bamboo, silk up to rice paper common today, and the ink that is made out of bark from some type of tree.
Every calligraphy painting is signed by the artist twice on completed works- one on the upper right corner which is usually a “feeling”, and the signature on the lower left corner which is the artist’s name.
The two main techniques in Chinese painting are:
1. Meticulous – Gong-bi (工筆) often referred to as “court-style” painting
2. Freehand – Shui-mo (水墨) loosely termed watercolour or brush painting.
The Chinese character “mo” means ink and “shui” means water. This style is also referred to as “xie yi” (寫意) or freehand style.
Calligraphy is an art dating back to the beginning of script, and widely practiced throughout China, Korea, and Japan to this day.
*in the Chinese language alone, there are six major forms of calligraphy, beginning from the most ancient form of writing- pictography, to simplified characters written without removing the brush even once from the paper.
Although it uses Chinese words as its vehicle of expression, one does not have to know Chinese to appreciate its beauty. Because its essence, Calligraphy may be an abstract form of art.
Other than Chinese, calligraphy can also be Japanese, Islamic (mostly geometric shapes), South Asian, Latin and Hebrew calligraphy.
Some of the most famous Chienese Calligraphy artist are: Wang Xi Zhi, Jing Hao, Fan Kuan, Guo Xi, Dong Yuan and Juran.
**Many Japanese calligraphy artist were monks which found calligraphy as a way to express themselves such as: Hakuin , Dogen , Sengai Gibon , Torei Enji , Kokai , Fugai Akon, Kogan sengei , Reigen Eto.
Thanks to Sharon Small which helped writing this article.
Want to learn more about Chinese Calligraphy? http://arts.cultural-china.com/23two.html
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