A Donkey for Mr. Zhu

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Maker(s)
Artist: Qiu Ying 仇英 (ca. 1494-1552)
Calligrapher: Xu Zhenqing (1479-1511)
Historical period(s)
Ming dynasty, calligraphy 1500; painting ca. 1550
Medium
Ink on paper
Dimensions
H x W (image): 26.5 x 70.1 cm (10 7/16 x 27 5/8 in)
Geography
China, Jiangsu province
Credit Line
Gift of Arthur M. Sackler
Accession Number
S1987.213
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Painting
Type

Handscroll

Keywords
China, donkey, Ming dynasty (1368 - 1644), scholar, WWII-era provenance
Provenance

From at least 1824
Wu Xiu (1764-1827), China [1]

From at least 1891
Lu Xinyuan (1834-1894), China [2]

From at least 1902
Duanfang (1861-1911), China [3]

From at least 1928
Guan Mianjun (1871-1933), China [4]

From at least 1967
Frank Caro (1904-1980), New York, New York [5]

From possibly ca. 1967 to 1987
Arthur M. Sackler (1913-1987), New York, New York [6]

From 1987
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., gift of Arthur M. Sackler on September 11, 1987 [7]

Notes:

[1] According to Wu Xiu 吳修, Qingxiaguan lunhua jueju 青霞館論畫絕句 (One Hundred Quatrains Praising Painting from the Lodge of Green Vapors), (1824), vol. 16, pp. 216–17.

[2] According to Lu Xinyuan 陸心源, Rangliguan guoyan lu 穰梨館過眼錄 (Appreciative Notes on Painting and Calligraphy), (Wuxing: Yigutang 儀顧堂, 1891), 19:3a-5b, along with the first three colophons.

[3] According to Duanfang 端方, Renyin xiaoxia lu 壬寅消夏錄, (1902), 2 vols. In Xuxiu Siku quanshu 續修四庫全書. 1800 vols. (Shanghai: Shanghai guji chubanshe, 1995–2002), vol. 1089: vol. 1, pp. 552–54.

[4] According to Guan, Mianjun, San qiu ge shu hua lu (A Catalogue of Calligraphy and Painting from the Hall of Three Autumns), (1928), pp. 46, plate 1.

[5] The handscroll was on loan to the Princeton University Art Museum from January 11, 1967. According to information from the Princeton University Art Museum registrars, initially, the loan agreement listed Frank Caro as the lender. Subsequently, at an unknown date, Frank Caro’s name was crossed off and instead Arthur M. Sackler’s name was written. Given this information, it seems likely that as of at least 1967, Frank Caro was the owner of the painting, when the original loan agreement was signed. See correspondences from the Princeton University Art Museum dated June 25 and June 15, 2018, copies in object file, Collections Management Office. See also Marilyn Fu and Shen Fu, Studies in Connoisseurship: Chinese Paintings from the Arthur M. Sackler Collection in New York, Princeton and Washington D.C., (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1973), pp. 86-93.

[6] The object was part of the traveling exhibition, Rarities of Chinese Paintings from the Arthur M. Sackler Collections. It was on view at the Princeton University Art Museum, December 8, 1973 – February 3, 1974; Cleveland Museum of Art, July 10 – September 2, 1974; Los Angeles Museum of Art, September 15 – November 3, 1974; Metropolitan Museum of Art, May 13 – September 7, 1976, among possibly other venues. Arthur M. Sackler acquired a number of objects for his collection from Frank Caro’s gallery in New York in the 1960s and 1970s; it is, therefore, possible that he acquired the painting directly from Frank Caro.

[7] Pursuant to the agreement between Arthur M. Sackler and the Smithsonian Institution, dated July 28, 1982, legal title of the donated objects was transferred to the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery on September 11, 1987.

Previous Owner(s)

Duanfang 1861-1911
Frank Caro 1904-1980
Dr. Arthur M. Sackler 1913-1987
Guan Mianjun 1871 - 1933
Lu Xinyuan 1834 - 1894
Wu Xiu 1764 - 1827

Inscription(s)

Inscriptions: After a prose essay in twenty one lines, in regular script.

Marking(s)

Artists Seals: Shi fu (relief, square).
Collectors Seals: 14 collectors and appreciators script.
Collector Seals: Zhang Da Qian, Zhang Yuan si-yin (intaglio, square) and Da qian fu zhang Da ji (intaglio, square).

Label

The poor but noted poet and book lover Zhu Cunli is depicted accepting the gift of a donkey purchased with funds collected on his behalf by scholar-friends. This story is told in the calligraphy section of the handscroll.

Published References
  • et al. Asian Art in the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery: The Inaugural Gift. Washington, 1987. cat. 193, p. 289.
  • Marilyn Fu Fu Shen. Studies in Connoisseurship: Chinese Paintings from the Arthur M. Sackler Collections in New York, Princeton, and Washington, D.C., Third Edition. Princeton, 1973. pp. 86-95.
  • Craig Clunas. Elegant Debts: The Social Art of Wen Zhengming. London. pp. 55-56.
  • Guan Mienzhun. Sanqiuge shuhualu: A Catalogue of Calligraphy and Painting from the Hall of Three Autumns. p. 46, pl. 1.
  • Hirada Kenjiro. Chugoku meiga hokan (The Pagent of Chinese Painting). Tokyo. pl. 569.
  • Lu Xinyuan. Zhangliguan guoyenlu (Appreciative Notes on Painting and Calligraphy). colophons 1-3.
  • Robert E. Harrist, Jr. Power and Virtue: Images of Horses in Chinese Art. Exh. cat. New York. .
  • To So Gen Min meiga tengo (Exhibition of Great Paintings from the Tang, Sung and Ming Dynasties). Exh. cat. Tokyo. p. 59.
  • To So Gen Min meiga taikan (A Catalogue of Famous Paintings of the Tang, Sung, Yuan, and Ming Dynasties). Exh. cat. Tokyo. pl. 279.
  • Wu Xiu. Chingxiaguan Iunhua juezhu yibaishou (One Hundred Quatrains Praising Painting). vol. 16, . pp. 216-217.
  • Craig Clunas. Elegant Debts: The Social Art of Wen Zhengming., Chinese language edition. Taiwan. p. 79, fig. 17-18.
  • Sabina Knight. Chinese Literature: A Very Short Introduction. United Kingdom. p. 59.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum