Fish and Plants Ink and color on silk, horizontal hand scroll signed Dongjiao Zu Shihong followed by two seals of the artist reading Shihong zhi yin and Dongjiao. 12 1/4 x 92 1/2in (31.1 x 235cm)
Provenance: acquired in China 1946-1949
A subject for Chinese painters since the twelfth century, fish swimming amid aquatic plants is often read as a reference to the episode "Autumn Flood" in the Zhuangzi, the fourth century B.C. Daoist classic, in which the philosopher contemplates the pleasures of being a fish. In this scroll the artist deftly captures the quick and darting movements of a variety of fish and crustaceans in their natural environment. Employing pale, translucent colors, Zhu Shihong realistically creates a watery scene of quiet beauty.