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Virtual Media Area - Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival

Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival

Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival is a portrayal of prosperity and affluence along the Bian River in Kaifeng, capital city of the Northern Sung dynasty. The earliest extant version of this subject is a masterpiece by Sung artist Chang Tse-duan (fl. 12th century). It has been a popular motif throughout the generations. The National Palace Museum alone houses seven different versions. Among them, the one painted by five Ch’ing imperial court painters is arguably the most fascinating. This collaborative piece painted in 1736 measures 35.6 cm in height and 1152.8 cm in length. The meticulously rendered painting features unique customs of the Ming and Ch’ing dynasties, providing a wonderful first-hand account of contemporary lifestyles.

 

A comparison of selected versions of Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival in the collection of the National Palace Museum.

Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Court artists, Ch'ing Dynasty (1736)(New window)
Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Court artists, Ch'ing Dynasty (1736)

Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Attributed to Chang Tse-duan (fl. 12th century), Sung Dynasty(New window)
Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Attributed to Chang Tse-duan (fl. 12th century), Sung Dynasty

Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Attributed to Chang Tse-duan (fl. 12th century), Sung Dynasty(New window)
Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Attributed to Chang Tse-duan (fl. 12th century), Sung Dynasty

Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Attributed to Ch'iu Ying (ca. 1494-1552), Ming Dynasty(New window)
Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Attributed to Ch'iu Ying (ca. 1494-1552), Ming Dynasty

Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Shen Yüan (fl. 1744-1747), Ch'ing Dynasty(New window)
Along the River During the Ching-ming Festival
Shen Yüan (fl. 1744-1747), Ch'ing Dynasty