A pair of swallows flying over a pool

Liu Xiling (1848-1923) was from the region of present-day Sichuan province. He was active during the Guangxu period (1875-1908) of the Qing dynasty (1644-1911). He toured extensively in China and was well known for his series of albums of landscapes and local customs. Liu started to paint with his fingers and palms after the age of 40, probably inspired by Gao Qipei (1660-1734). This painting is from an album of Liu's finger paintings. Swallows are one of his favourite subjects and he liked to depict birds flying towards the viewer, which was not common in Chinese bird painting. The inscription reads 'Swallows are twittering by a pool, willows swaying from the east wind.'

Details

  • Catalogue text

    Active in the Guangxu (1875-1908) period of the Qing dynasty Liu Xiling was from Huayang (present-day Chengdu) in Sichuan province, but as a painter was active in Zhejiang. His painting style and subject matter were inspired by Gao Qipei (q.v.).

    In: Vainker, Shelagh, Chinese Paintings in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2000)

Further reading

Vainker, Shelagh, Chinese Paintings in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2000), no. 82 on p. 101, illus. p. 102 fig. 82c

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