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A Study on Jiang Tingxi’s Picked Beauties of Beautiful Flowers
The “Picked Beauties of Beautiful Flowers ” now in the National Palace Museum, is an album of paintings and calligraphy jointly produced by Emperor Kangxi and Jiang Tingxi (1669-1732). This work is based on twelve spices of flowers. Each set consists of a poem written by Emperor Kangxi and a flower painting by Jiang Tingxi. They are all made of various colored paper. With the using of colored paper as the media, which gives the work a special visual presentation, and the coloring of paintings also presents a style that different from Chinese tradition. In addition, the theme of the work has added the flowers beyond the great wall, which is not common in poetry and painting traditions. This study takes “Picked Beauties of Beautiful Flowers ” as the research object, and cuts it from the perspective of painting, calligraphy and works, to clarify the positioning of this work in the Qing Dynasty flower painting. Its selection of painting styles and media highlights the emphasis on color in the Kangxi era, as well as the incorporation of Chinese painting and the "Western Techniques" that were visible at the time to present a new visual experience. The calligraphy style and content written by Emperor Kangxi in it presents his mastery of Chinese culture, and conveys the message of recruiting talents over the empire through the calligraphy and poetry. The theme of the work also reflects the intention of Emperor Kangxi to adjust the traditional Chinese knowledge system in the middle of the reign, join the new elements of the empire, and construct a new culture suitable for the Qing Empire. Discussion of the importance of Jiang Tingxi's painting in the court of the Qing Dynasty is also provided in the end of the thesis. In order to establish Jiang Tingxi as an important role in establishing the eclectic style of Kangxi Dynasty flower painting between Chinese and Western models.
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