Painted and signed by Wen Zheng Ming in the Autumn of Wu Sheng Year. Wen Zheng Ming seals, Shi Qu Bao Ji seal and Emperor Jia Qing's seal in the painting. Colophon by Wang Ji Deng and Wang Shi Zhen. Beautiful Chinese grisaille ink painting of cherry blossom branch, with lengthy text. Hand-painted traditional Chinese long scroll depicting a twisted cherry blossom branch adorned with an abundance of feathery blooms. Initial outer surface bears a skilled silk-woven image done in the various colored thread. Proceeding the painting of the tree branch is three large blocks of text arrays done in semi-cursive Chinese characters interspersed with iron-red official seals. The scroll is kept rolled up by a ribbon and jadestone locking-pin that is inscribed with a beautiful repeating pattern. Di-gan Rod is strong and true allowing for the scroll to be wrapped easily and transported safely.
Dimensions: 295" L x 10-1/2" W
PROVENANCE: Both paintings were originally owned by the currently 90-year-old Hua Guangzu (1929-), an avid collector of ancient and modern Chinese paintings and calligraphy. Guangzu was born as the only son in 1929 into a wealthy family of collectors. His grandfather served in the Guang Xu period of Qing Dynasty as prefect magistrate. Guangzu inherited porcelains and paintings from his father. Along with knowledge from his family, he started a collection of his own and gradually developed a love for modern landscape paintings from early pioneers like Guan Shan Yue , Wu Hu Fan and Fu Bao Shi. Despite great loss from confiscation, Guangzu managed to protect his early collections through cultural revolutions. He loved calligraphy and has been a frequent donor to calligraphy promotional events aimed for young children in China. The scrolls came from his early collection on Ming calligraphy and painting.
Wen Zhengming was born Wen Bi near present-day Suzhou on November 28, 1470. He would later be known by his courtesy name, Zhengming. He had an elder brother, Wen Gui, who was born in 1469. When Zhengming was two years old, his father, Wen Lin, passed the imperial examination with the highest possible rank, jinshi. Wen Lin was assigned a government position as a magistrate in Yongjia County in Zhejiang province, and left for his job, leaving his two sons in the care of his wife, Qi Shenning. In 1476, Qi died of an illness at the age of 32. Wen Lin commissioned the noted scholar Li Dongyang to write an inscription for her tomb.Wen Zhengming’s family was originally from a line of military men who lived in Hengshan County, Hunan province. At the time of his great-great-grandfather Wen Dingcong, the family moved to the city of Changzhou in the Suzhou area. Zhengming was a distant relative of the Song dynasty official Wen Tianxiang, through an ancestor who lived in Hengshan. From this he derived his hao (art name), Hengshan, which he used to sign many of his works. His father Wen Lin and his grandfather Wen Hong (Gongda) were both interested in painting. Wen Lin was also a patron of Tang Yin, Wen Zhengming's contemporary and fellow member of the "Four Masters of the Ming dynasty".