Chinese Landscape Painting: Its Meaning and Elements Mountains, rivers, and, on occasion, waterfalls are the three main components that comprise a shan shui painting. As a result, the Chinese term for landscape painting is "shan shui" ("mountain-water").
Strikingly different from European landscapes that often feature trees and other vegetation, most Chinese paintings of this type show barren mountains with only some rocks or sticks lying about their bases. The reason for this difference is that in China, there are no laws protecting wildlife so people have taken it upon themselves to protect animals by not letting them come into contact with plants that might harm them. For example, farmers will not let their livestock drink from ponds that contain fish because they believe the fish may be hurt and not recover quickly enough to make it to market.
This policy extends to wild animals. In fact, in order for farmers to protect their crops, they will sometimes move whole villages to avoid planting where one village stood before. Because of this, you do not usually find trees or other vegetation in Chinese paintings because if someone was going to paint trees they would leave them in their natural state as opposed to cutting them down first.
Another difference between Chinese and European landscapes is that in China, there are usually no human figures present in the picture.
Viewing Chinese landscape paintings reveals that Chinese renderings of nature are rarely just reproductions of the outside world. Rather, they are manifestations of the particular artists' minds and hearts—cultivated landscapes that symbolize their masters' culture and nurture. Asian Art Department, Museum of Modern Art, New York City.
Chinese painting is unique in its treatment of landscape. There are two main reasons for this: first, as mentioned above, ancient Chinese writers noted that the human mind needs stimulation to be creative, so they encouraged poets and painters to travel around their country to see new things. This is probably why there are so many different scenes in old Chinese paintings—the artist had not seen them before and wanted to record them for future generations. The second reason is that ancient Chinese philosophers believed that reflection was important for understanding one's self and the world around us. So they advised their students to look into a mirror once in a while - this helped them learn about themselves and their society with no other interference from outside sources.
In conclusion, Chinese painting is unique because it is cultivated by experts who study the arts and write about them. As we study Chinese painting, we can learn about another culture through its art.
The Chinese word for "landscape" consists of two characters that indicate "mountains and water." It is associated with the Daoist philosophy, which promotes harmony with the natural world. In China, mountains are revered as sacred objects and temples are built in their honor.
Chinese paintings show landscapes with great accuracy. They use light and shade to create images that have a three-dimensional appearance. The artist conveys emotion through style. Each painter has his or her own unique technique which results in works that are beautiful yet unpredictable.
Mountains are an important element in Chinese painting. They not only provide a background for scenes but also serve as metaphors for something deeper. For example, a mountain could symbolize strength or power when used in battle paintings, but it could also represent wisdom or age when used in spiritual paintings.
Water features prominently in Chinese art. It can be seen as a symbol of life or destruction depending on the context. In addition to being used as a backdrop, water is often included as a subject in its own right. Rivers, lakes, and seas make up most of the world's oceans but are rarely shown in Western paintings due to the fact that they are not interesting.
Chinese painters were inspired by nature. Therefore, their work reflects the environment around them including people, animals, and plants.