Revisiting the Eastern Fence: Tao Qian's Chrysanthemums
Posted on 25. May, 2009 by James Miller
|Title||Revisiting the Eastern Fence: Tao Qian's Chrysanthemums|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2001|
|Journal||The Art Bulletin|
The poet Tao Qian (365-427), who retired to the country to farm, drink, and write, was fond of chrysanthemums. Tao came to be one of China's best-loved poets, and the chrysanthemums in later art and literature served to represent personal, philosophical, and political values associated with him. Those values, however, could be variously construed, and the meanings and uses of chrysanthemums in visual culture are accordingly mutable and complex. The chrysanthemum's iconographic multivalence testifies to the protean vitality of the culture hero in Chinese history and demonstrates how such signs function dynamically in Chinese pictorial systems.