Framing Famous Mountain: Grand Tour and Mingshan Paintings in Sixteenth-century China

Author: FU Li-tsui Flora

Year of Publication: 2009

Publisher: The Chinese University Press

Mingshan, which literally means “famous mountains,” refers to a group of mountains in China that have been set apart for special veneration since ancient times. Over the centuries, the “famous mountains” as a conceptual term has been continually reinvented, reframed, and reappropriated by different ideological systems. Treating landscape painting as yet another framing system, in both the symbolic and material sense, this book examines sixteenth-century paintings of famous mountains by three major artists in the light of a diachronic account of the evolution of famous mountains over time and a synchronic account of the vogue for the grand tour in late Ming society.

The author adopts a cultural approach in describing the significance of paintings of famous mountains in late Ming and delves into the cultural imagery of famous mountains and their pictorial representation and artistic presentation. This book helps the reader understand Chinese landscape painting from a new and refreshing perspective.