WASHINGTON — As Washington, D.C., enters its summer swelter, escape into Asian serenity at the Freer Gallery of Art and enjoy the many landscape scrolls that are “Style in Chinese Landscape Painting: The Song Legacy.”
While the point of the “Song Legacy” exhibition was to “define the most salient characteristics of the individual styles,” says Stephen Allee, associate curator for Chinese painting and calligraphy, there’s more than just the washes, stipples and thick brush strokes on paper, or the more expensive silk scrolls.
Like some Western art, Chinese landscapes have layers of meaning. While the intent of the artists may be to paint the landscape, most of the scrolls have humans in them, as well as carts, towers and palaces. Each tells a story in the scroll and out.
China’s Song Dynasty existed from 960 to 1279 AD. The