the artful recluse

The Artful Recluse: Painting, Poetry and Politics



Asia Society Museum presents Artful Recluse: Painting, Poetry, and Politics in Seventeenth-Century China. The exhibition offers a fascinating glimpse into the private world of scholar-painters. Affected by the crises of their times, they sought solace in the ancient ideal of reclusion, retreating either literally or figuratively from life serving a treacherous court to private life devoted to nature, art, and learning. Many paintings depict traditional Chinese imagery: vast landscapes, the natural world, while others created unprecedented work, depicting journeys of self-reflection.

The poems and texts that accompanying the paintings take us ever deeper into the private worlds of these “artful recluses.” These are worlds as subtle and elegant as those who created them, lofty realms of timeless beauty, intellect, and complex emotions. Authors: Peter C. Sturman & Susan Tai (Prestel, 2012, HC, 320pp) More information on past exhibition

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