Top 10 most famous Chinese paintings

By Xu Lin
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail, November 8, 2011
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 Five Oxen (《五牛图》)

Five Oxen, one of the 'top 10 most famous Chinese paintings' by

Five Oxen

"Five Oxen" is a painting by Han Huang, a prime minister in the Tang Dynasty (618–907). The painting was lost during the occupation of Beijing by the Eight-Nation Alliance in 1900 and later recovered from a collector in Hong Kong during the early 1950s. Now it is stored in the Palace Museum in Beijing.

The painting is 139.8 cm long and 20.8 cm wide. The five oxen in varied postures and colors in the painting are drawn with thick, heavy and earthy brushstrokes. They are endowed with subtle human characteristics, delivering the spirit of the willingness to bear the burden of hard labor without complaints.

Most of the paintings recovered from ancient China are of flowers, birds and human figures. This painting is the only one with oxen as its subject that are represented so vividly, making the painting one of the best animal paintings in China's art history.

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