Fu Baoshi (1904-1965)  Spring Morning at Mount Shao
Lot 888
Fu Baoshi (1904-1965)
Spring Morning at Mount Shao
Refer to department for estimate

Lot Details
MODERN CHINESE PAINTINGS FROM A DISTINGUISHED BRITISH PRIVATE COLLECTION
MODERN CHINESE PAINTINGS FROM A DISTINGUISHED BRITISH PRIVATE COLLECTION
重要英國私人珍藏二十世紀中國書畫
LOTS 887-891

A HONG KONG COLLECTION
Colin Sheaf

One of the pleasures of making a professional career in Hong Kong, both long before and now after 1997, has been the opportunity to engage with the everchanging resident and visiting communities of art enthusiasts there. The mixture is diverse and stimulating: academics at the universities and museums; Chinese and Western established and experimental collectors; Chinese (and a few foreign) dealers ensconced in their dozens down the long and winding spine of the Hong Kong antiques dragon, Hollywood Road; and students attracted from all over Asia to participate in the burgeoning cultural life after the late 1960s, when Hong Kong began to recapture its economic and cultural vitality. Almost anyone making a successful career in Hong Kong would find themselves equally attracted to the established antique markets, and to the vibrant Contemporary art life (mostly driven by a few leading galleries) which encouraged emerging collectors to venture into more challenging territory than the placid sunlit grasslands of traditional Chinese brush and ink painting. But for most Westerners, the greatest pleasure and challenge often lay in choosing twentieth-century mainland and Hong Kong artists whose work had a personal appeal, and supporting (in the case of living artists, directly) their work and development.

One of those Westerners discovering and indulging a taste for Chinese painting in the late 1960s, after a somewhat unconventional early life as an evacuee from both Shanghai and Hong Kong leading to his early education in Canada followed by a more traditional English upbringing, was a young executive at the most famous British trading company in Hong Kong, Jardine Matheson & Co. Jardines was established in Canton in 1832, more than a decade before it acquired a grand plot of land to build a headquarters building in the newly-ceded Crown Colony in 1844. Traditionally it was 'Jardines' whose Chief Executive in Hong Kong was frequently known as the 'Taipan', an acknowledged senior figure in the community. With an exciting career ahead of him at Jardines, focussed both on opportunities in Hong Kong itself and also on sectors like trading with the emergent People's Republic of China, David Newbigging would himself one day occupy this distinguished position as the culmination of 30 years spent with the Company.

Born in Tianjin, where his father was Jardines' branch office manager, later becoming a Director, he was educated in Canada and England, before joining Jardines in 1954. After serving in management positions around Asia, and in London and Australia, he was appointed a Main Board director in 1967, and Chairman and Senior Managing
Director in 1975.

During his years at the helm of Jardines, he served on many Government and Private Sector Committees, most notably from 1978-1982 on Hong Kong's principal governing body, the Legislative Council (LEGCO). He was also appointed to the Executive Council (EXCO) in 1982, the most senior body advising the Governor. For this and many other services to business and the community, including chairing the HK Tourist Association and the General Chamber of Commerce, and supporting many local charities (notably as Chairman of Hong Kong's pre-eminent charity, the Community Chest), he was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1982. Retiring from Hong Kong in 1984, he relocated to London and was appointed Chairman or Director of several charities and publicly-listed companies in the United Kingdom and the USA. He was Chairman of Cancer Research UK and was awarded a Knighthood by the Queen for voluntary service to cancer research.

Collecting art was a pleasure which could only fill the small interstices in a very busy Hong Kong business and family life. Nevertheless, it did occupy a significant portion of his free time, and by 1984 he had assembled a small but carefully-chosen selection of Chinese paintings and works of art. He was drawn to work by twentieth century Chinese artists, enjoying the interplay of traditional Chinese technique in limited media with the innovative aspects generated by mainland artists at last permitted to travel abroad, increasing their familiarity with artistic trends in Japan and the West (especially Paris). He was thus able to acquire many excellent paintings.

(introduction to be continued in the next lot)
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Fu Baoshi (1904-1965)  Spring Morning at Mount Shao
Fu Baoshi (1904-1965)
Spring Morning at Mount Shao
Ink and colour on paper, framed
Titled, inscribed and signed Fu Baoshi, with three seals of the artist
Dated February 1961
146 x 201.5cm (57½ x 79⅜in).

Footnotes

  • 傅抱石 韶峰春曉 設色紙本 鏡框 一九六一年作

    款識:
    韶峰春曉。
    一九六一年二月,重訪韶山歸來寫於南京。傅抱石。

    鈐印:一九六一、抱石之印、䡮跡大化

    註:傅抱石乃新中國成立後,首位以毛澤東詩意進行創作的藝術家。他深知「筆墨當隨時代」的重要性,全國各地數萬里的旅行寫生,「搜儘奇峰打草稿」,傅抱石漸漸脫離金剛坡時期的沈鬱恣肆,形成了清新而雄渾的繪畫語彙,可以說,描繪新中國大好河山以及革命題材的創作,是傅抱石創作生涯最重要的組成。傅抱石將自己獨特的審美、筆墨風格與時代要求完美地結合,其命維新,而傅抱石在創新上所取得的成就,足堪與張大千晚年開創的潑墨潑彩相比肩,是二十世紀中國畫壇乃至世界畫壇的佼佼者。

    〈韶峰春曉〉為已知現存傅氏此一題材最大尺幅的作品,不論構圖、設色、細節調度尤其是前景山石的皴法處理,皆為抱石畫作中獨樹一幟者,不愧為畫家晚年紅色題材的一幅精品傑構。

    本幅作品一九六八年夏天,購於香港華潤公司,自此便懸掛於大衛爵士家客廳正中,乃其所藏中國藝術品中最寶愛者。然物有聚散,一九六八年到二〇一八年,整整五十年,彈指一揮間,今藏家年已耄耋,方捨得釋出,亦成就中國書畫海外收藏的又一段佳話。


    煦色韶光──傅抱石〈韶峰春曉〉讀記
    萬新華
    南京博物院研究員


    韶山為南嶽衡山七十二峰之一,位於湖南湘潭、湘鄉、寧鄉三縣交界處,以韶峰山脈和韶河、石獅江為骨架,形成西部隆起、往東及南傾斜的地勢。鍾靈毓秀,風景怡人。乾隆二年(1737),湘鄉文人戴炯為《中湘韶山毛氏始修族譜》作序,從戰國奇才毛遂自薦而預言韶山毛氏定會出現「為國之華,為邦之望,使人與地俱傳」的人物。1893年12月26日,毛澤東(1893∼1976)誕生於韶山。半個世紀後,他領導中國共產黨締造了中華人民共和國。印證了戴炯所謂「韶山奇境出奇才」的預言。作為領袖故里,韶山日益成為新中國畫家進行山水寫生的主要表現對象。1959年6月6日,傅抱石應湖南人民出版社之邀第一次來到韶山寫生作畫。他勾畫不同角度的草圖,以速寫法收集素材(圖1),逐漸將個人的主觀感受和歌頌新時代的主題注入畫幅之中。四天後,傅抱石設計草圖,開始落墨,基本繪製完成〈韶山圖〉卷,同時,他還乘興創作〈韶峰聳翠〉(圖2)、〈慈悅晚鐘〉、〈石壁流泉〉、〈頓石成門〉、〈毛震公祠〉、〈毛主席故居〉、〈韶山招待所〉、〈將到毛主席故居處的風景〉、〈關公橋〉等系列組畫。「韶山組畫」脫離了寫生層面而進入主題創作,以「一種寬闊、高大、雄偉的畫面格局,創造了一種濃郁、繁盛、謹嚴的審美風格」,比較成功地完成了從一般山水向一種特定山水的轉移,表現出一種與韶山領袖精神相吻合的清新、濃郁的鮮明風格,實現了視覺語言、審美趣味與時代題材的有機融合。

    也就在傅抱石從韶山歸來一週後的6月25日,毛澤東回到了闊別32年的故鄉進行實地調研。毛澤東的故鄉之行,的確激發了中國上下對韶山的政治熱情,在社會上引發了1949年以後第一波「韶山熱」,也助長了美術界的韶山圖創作熱潮。對於這次韶山寫生經歷,傅抱石十分自得,幾乎沉浸在韶山組畫的創作熱情之中。1960年5月,或許因為得益於郭沫若的啟發和交流,傅抱石在第一時間虔誠地創作了第一幅〈毛澤東《到韶山》詩意圖〉(圖4)。就在創作〈毛澤東《到韶山》詩意圖〉前的三月,傅抱石接受任務,傾心投入於〈韶峰聳翠〉的創作之中。他沒有著意刻畫韶峰的皴法結構,而是運用對比、襯托的手段,著重突出韶峰的「聳」勢,並拓展了內容主題與思想境界。他融會水墨、石綠,聳起韶峰一段蒼翠郁茂,墨色交融,點、渲染匯為一體,溢發出無限生機(圖5)。

    1960年9月15日,傅抱石率領江蘇省國畫寫生工作團離開南京,相繼走訪河南、陝西、四川、湖北、湖南、廣東等六省十幾個城市,進行了為期三個月的寫生活動。在壯遊中,他一路走一路畫,瞻仰革命紀念地,參觀工礦企業,游覽風景名勝,不斷參悟了現實與藝術之間的問題。12月1日,傅抱石冒雨二次來到韶山沖,從水塘到故居,從毛震公祠到韶山招待所,感同身受,自然是非同一般。回寧後,傅抱石激情澎湃,重揀舊稿,細心收拾,落墨成畫,題云:「韶峰春曉。一九六一年二月,重訪韶山歸來,寫於南京,傅抱石」,鈐印「一九六一」(朱文方印)、「抱石之印」(白文方印),並以「蹤跡大化」(朱文方印)押角,熱切之情溢於言表。

    傅抱石描繪韶山八景之「韶峰聳翠」,在突出「聳翠」之時,又增加「春曉」的意涵,以青綠設色之法表達出韶山乃領袖誕生地、革命長青的思想。這裡,他以俯瞰視角截取韶峰一角,充分展現了韶山的清麗景象。遠景韶峰聳立,結構以中鋒長線勾勒,山體則強化「破筆點」,以示草木蔥蘢,春意盎然,更遠處山巒數疊,由濃到淡,漸行漸遠;近景山坡巨石嶙峋,凝重渾厚,與韶峰的峻峭形成強烈對比,而大片松林以重墨畫成以支撐畫面,既真實又活潑。韶峰也因有近處大石和山腰山腳間點綴之松樹和左邊低緩遠山的襯托,具有一種直沖雲霄的高聳之勢。畫面色墨交融,強調濃淡乾濕,層層暈染,筆墨游離於浪漫與真實之間以求變化,如山體的皴擦、樹木的點、雲霧的刻畫等皆經周密的安排,形象突出,層次分明,完全是一種自然平緩的抒寫。於是,晴朗的天空中到處彌漫著春天的溫馨煦色。

    在主題處理時,傅抱石以清新的語言來描繪與歌頌韶山,賦平凡景色予濃郁的感情色彩,如用濃墨寫出突兀塊石,以淡青和草綠渲染如黛青山,乃至淡墨點叢樹密林,層層疊疊,鬱鬱勃勃,都為畫面平添無窮的抒情氣韻。尤其是那些體會入微的茂密景象充溢著清新的生活氣息,加強了視覺經驗的親切感,也拉近了繪畫與自然的距離,從而實現了特定題材的政治內涵。總之,他在筆墨上弱化了獨立的形式奇崛,而強化工整細膩;又在色彩上以筆墨為骨加強色彩渲染,冷暖對應相諧,以營造和諧安寧的氣氛和明麗清純的情調,進入一種雅俗共賞的層面。

    韶山並不是繪畫傳統中的表現對象,從未進入文人視野而成為山水畫中的名山系列,但對20世紀中國政治思想空間而言,具有非常特殊的革命史懷想。因為所連帶的革命歷史背景,以山水形式描繪韶山,又不同於一般的表現自我或抒寫胸中逸氣的山水畫。除了綠水、青山、雲霧等自然內容,還有作為革命紀念地的一些基本要求,盡管這種要求沒有明文規定,卻有著基於崇敬心態的革命現實主義或革命浪漫主義的品評標准。因此,描繪韶山既有思想觀念上的轉變,又有形式技法上的新努力。首先,傅抱石十分強調素材的取捨,且服務於主題思想。如此,韶山從原先的寫生範疇轉化為政治歌頌的象徵層面,被賦予了某種革命性質的教化意義。於是,韶山寫生已不僅僅是觀察生活、體驗生活、表現生活的過程,也是畫家改造自己思想靈魂的過程。

    當然,韶山主題創作往往會涉及內容與形式的關係問題。形式屬於視覺,經過十餘年探索的傅抱石憑借已有創作經驗足能應付,也能夠創造出一種嶄新的視覺形式。那麼,如何進一步將蘊涵於韶山自然風景下的崇高和溫馨表達出來,而不是普通意義上的山水情懷,並在創作過程中藉以韶山之行的革命歷史感悟來消解一般審美中簡單的表象符號,進而使體驗通過藝術語言升華為形而上的思想精神。傅抱石不斷得到革命的熏陶,心靈滌宕萬千,並將這種體悟付諸於藝術探索,呈現了自然與生命交織的生動內涵。通過對韶山的視覺處理,〈韶峰春曉〉便在自然融會傳統趣味之時,也體現了時代所要求的思想內容,既充滿著大地泥土的芬芳和大自然清新的氣息,又寄注了飽滿的革命激情和發自肺腑的贊頌。「筆墨當隨時代」,在傅抱石手下絕不是一句空泛的口號。

    幾年間,傅抱石帶著瞻仰韶山的深切感受,接二連三地繪制韶山圖景。伴隨著韶山圖的展覽或出版,傅抱石的韶山圖不斷進入公眾視野並迅速傳播,獲得了廣泛的社會認同。這種以歌頌為主務的主題創作在主流輿論的支持下產生了持續的發酵效應,所謂「革命的崇高感」和「新社會的新氣象」的有效融合亦得到了積極的響應,發揮著新山水題材的典范意義。

    在後期繪畫生涯中,傅抱石一畫多稿、多本的現象十分普遍,尤其是諸如〈雨花臺頌〉、〈延安〉等革命紀念地主題更是如此,反覆錘煉,精心經營,在一定程度上說明畫家在特殊政治時空背景下的拘謹心態。隨著社會的泛政治化,作為革命紀念地的韶山景觀在意識形態的強大作用力下形成了超乎個人意志之上的統一的創作規範,傅抱石或多或少地喪失了自我的藝術創造性,表現出幾分難以自主的狀態。由於強調自然的寫實再現,他放棄了多年來得心應手的長於氣勢而弱於細節的筆墨方式,使得〈韶峰聳翠〉、〈韶峰春曉〉等一批表現特定內涵的大幅寫生作品,少了幾分輕鬆寫意。所以,傅抱石的韶山圖景不僅留下了深刻的時代烙印,而且生動見證了繪畫與社會的複雜關係。

    但是,〈韶峰春曉〉作為主旋律作品,所承載和播散的精神意義和文化價值,也非一般的山水畫所能比擬。無論是創作主體,還是意境內涵,〈韶峰春曉〉可謂是政治與藝術的結晶,代表著特定歷史時期主流意識和社會主導價值觀最集中的美學趣味。
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