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Biography of Chen Shu-Ren

 

With the Gao brothers one of the "Three Masters of the Lingnan School", Chen Shuren (1884?948), original name Shao, literary name De'an Laoren or Ershan Shanqiao, was also a native of Panyu in Guangdong province who learned painting under Ju Lian (1828-1904) in his early years and later pursued his studies in Japan . The banana tree has always been a perfect subject for expressing the subtlety of ink and brushwork, but this hanging scroll by Chen differs from more traditional paintings thanks to its spontaneous use of charming colours and the application of a Western perspective. Although working with a simplified form, Chen is still able to capture the essence of the tree, as he contrasts a small bird resting on a branch with the large banana tree and its central setting in the composition. Chen's simple and spontaneous personal style makes him the most lyrical literati artist of the "Three Masters of the Lingnan School".

 

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