The Xuande emperor ruled China from 1425-1434. He was the fifth emperor of the Ming dynasty (1368–1644). His rule was one of relative stability, and he devoted much of his time to painting and writing poetry, activities at which he was accomplished. As a painter he had a free brush style.

His paintings were often presented as gifts to favored members of the court; this painting, dated 1431, of a rat nibbling at lichee fruit is inscribed to a favorite eunuch.


More Art Monday: Collection Travelogue

Ten works from our collection have accrued impressive travel miles en route to exhibitions in other museums. Learn about their journeys here, brought to you by ART 24/7.

The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons, October 16, 1834,” 1834–35, by Joseph Mallord William Turner
Exhibition: “Late Turner: Painting Set Free”
Location: Tate Britain, London, United Kingdom
On view: Now through January 25, 2015
Distance: 3,546 miles

Spring Sale at Bendel’s,” 1921, by Florine Stettheimer
Exhibition: “Florine Stettheimer“
Location: Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus, Munich, Germany
On view: Now through January 4, 2015
Distance: 4,116 miles

Basin, early 15th century, Xuande Period (1426–1435), Ming Dynasty (1368–1644), China
Exhibition: “Ming: 50 Years That Changed China”
Location: British Museum, London, United Kingdom
On view: Now through January 5, 2015
Distance: 3,546 miles

The Man of Sorrows (Christ Crowned with Thorns),” c. 1490, by Domenico Ghirlandaio
Exhibition: “Memling: Rinascimento Fiammingo”
Location: Scuderie del Quirinale, Rome, Italy
On view: October 11, 2014, to January 18, 2015
Distance: 4,366 miles

Marine,” 1866, by Gustave Courbet
Exhibition: “Gustave Courbet”
Location: Fondation Beyeler, Basel, Switzerland
On view: Now through January 18, 2015
Distance: 3,971 miles

The Papacy Offered to Saint Gregory the Great [?],” c. 1435, by Follower of Fra Angelico
Exhibition: “Fra Angelico, Botticelli: Rediscovered Masterpieces”
Location: Musée Condé/Domaine de Chantilly, Chantilly, France
On view: Now through January 4, 2015
Distance: 3,709 miles

Bacchus and Ariadne on the Isle of Naxos,” c. 1693, by Antoine Coypel
Exhibition: “Sensation and Sensuality: Rubens and His Legacy”
Location: Centre for Fine Arts, Brussels, Belgium
On view: Now through January 4, 2015
Distance: 3,744 miles

Purple and Rose: The Lange Leizen of the Six Marks,” 1864, by James Abbott McNeill Whistler
Exhibition: “James McNeill Whistler Retrospective”
Location: National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, Japan
On view: Now through November 16, 2014
Distance: 6,901 miles

Port of Le Havre,” 1874, by Claude Monet
Exhibition: “Impression Sunrise”
Location: Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris, France
On view: Now through January 18, 2015
Distance: 3,709 miles

Follette,” 1890, by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec
Exhibition: “Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec—The Path to Modernism”
Location: Kunstforum Wien, Vienna, Austria
On view: October 16, 2014 through January 25, 2015
Distance: 4,308 miles


i really feel like i’ve never drawn xuande properly and then i saw that old drawing, the first one, and like wow why did i move away from that design, especially his eyes… 

yide is singing along to 《够爱》the theme song to KO3anguo and a persistent ear-worm. the last panel is just a downstairs neighbour telling him to keep it down while he basically responds fight me bruh

yes hello it is the power gay couple huang zhong and yan yan, the one that shares more than a century of power gayness between them. huang zhong still runs a marathon like twice a year, and he does it to raise funds for a HIV/AIDS non-profit called aizhi action. apart from running, he also keeps physically and mentally fit by archery. he goes to this club that a certain other xiahou also frequents.

theotherjax I WILL DO THE MEME THING SOON i have it all sketched out!!! 


The shop they work at isn’t theirs.

Some time ago, Liu Bei was walking past the shop when an old man trying to move carts of stuff inside collapsed. He ended up not just helping him up; he would pop in before and after work to check on Tao Qian, at first helping him run errands, eventually helping him run the store, and finally roping in his brothers to help when he was too busy at work to stop by.

The shop wasn’t Tao Qian’s either.

Tao Qian lived alone in a room above his shop. He has one grandson, around five or six years old, who would stay with him for one day each week; he would be dropped off at the shop by his mother after school, and then picked up before school the day after. She wouldn’t go into the shop herself. Tao Qian had never seen her face for some time now; not even in his grandson’s face, because he was a carbon copy of his father at his age. Not that Tao Qian needed any reminder of what his father looked like; he didn’t disown him only on account for the grandson, but anyway what difference would it make, since he was in jail and would probably live the rest of his life there.

Liu Bei told Tao Qian he could try help him reinvigorate his business. He started fixing broken shelves and gave the walls a fresh coat of paint. He cleaned up and rearranged the shop. Tao Qian had thought his business where he would buy and sell other people’s junk would die with him. Liu Bei gave these junks a second life, and with that, his shop too. Young people, dressed in what Tao Qian guessed would be called ‘hip’ outfits started coming to a neighbourhood that had not seen people below the age of 60 for years.

“I’ve never paid you,” said Tao Qian to Liu Bei one day.

“I never asked for any pay,” said Liu Bei quickly. “Tao-shu, I’m not doing this for any reward.”

“No,” said Tao Qian, “you’ve restored my shop, my dignity, and my faith in humanity. No, I can’t not give you anything in return.”

Liu Bei scratched the back of his ear. “Please, shushu, don’t make this difficult for me. I’m happy helping you out, it’s an opportunity to try doing business, like an internship, but actually rewarding. I should thank you for letting me do all of these.”

Tao Qian clasped his shoulder.

“I will be a tortured ghost after I die if I don’t do this,” said Tao Quan. “I’ll transfer my shop to your name now.”

Liu Bei jumped back. “No!”

“I don’t want to just leave it to you in my will. Wills can be contested, especially by my asshole son and daughter-in-law. As it stands now, I’ve left my shop to my grandson in my will since I otherwise have no family to name anymore.”

Liu Bei shook his head. “Tao-shu, I appreciate the gesture, but no, to an outsider, all they will see is an opportunistic young man taking advantage of an old man in the name of 'benevolence’. It will only make all of our lives difficult.”

In the end, a compromise was reached: Tao Qian could pay them a salary, and he could treat them to a good dinner, which Liu Bei warned would not be cheap because of Zhang Fei’s taste in meat and volume of alcohol consumption.

Tao Qian died before he could make good on that promise to buy them dinner. The shop went to his grandson, with instructions that Liu Bei (and whoever he saw fit to hire) would run it on his behalf. Any matters relating to the shop and its business were left to him. He left them the room upstairs, rent-free. For the first time in many years, they didn’t have to worry about not having somewhere to sleep that night. That is, if they could keep the shop running.

That wouldn’t be easy. Tao Qian also left them with a mountain of debts and mortgages. They weren’t just harassed by loan sharks and gangsters the banks hired; property agents and other businesses had long smelled blood and joined in the hunt. Taking whatever piss little money offered and selling the shop was out of the question. Liu Bei and Guan Yu were already barely holding Zhang Fei back from provoking the gangsters too much, knowing that it wasn’t just his safety or theirs at line, but perhaps the whole neighbourhood’s. And even Zhang Fei’s fists wouldn’t be able to stop the banks from foreclosing and seizing the shop.

This lottery ticket might come in handy.

More on the shop:

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 56 

more stories?

It was not until the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) when five-clawed dragons became strictly exclusive to Imperial works of art. The dragon from this exquisite stem bowl, bearing the reign mark of the fifth Ming emperor Xuande, is masterfully painted with two ferocious five-clawed dragon frolicking amidst roaring waves- the ultimate symbol of Imperial power and patronage.
This lot will be offered in our Important Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art auction on 30 November 2016 at Christie’s Hong Kong.
#chinese #ceramic #ming #dragon

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two of the hardest characters to sketch out, in terms of drawing or writing ;; if i have to distill their differences, i’d say

cao cao is incredibly complex and he knows it, but he doesn’t try or bother hiding parts of himself to others (he lies, but that’s a different thing from hiding yourself); in fact, he invites others to try and appreciate his character. he is an open book, if that book is something like james joyce’s finnegans wake. this is an incredibly difficult, if not impossible task to do, and perhaps (apart from xiahou dun) only xun yu comes close to truly understanding him (but as he later finds out, there’s still so much about him he doesn’t know).

no one knows the real liu bei, and that goes for liu bei himself. he’s so concerned with crafting this image to appeal to other people, and after a while the guilt of deceiving those closest to him and those who love him overwhelms him so much it makes him question and hate his “real” self, the “real” liu bei that, to him, is only a selfish manipulative liar. but that’s not true, too (a pure manipulative liar would never feel his immense guilt). the real liu bei probably lies somewhere between what he sees, and what his brothers, zhao yun, zhuge liang, and cao cao see. 


I can’t think of anything that rhymes with yu/lü lmao

(modern Chinese don’t actually have style/courtesy names; they do in this AU because it’s an alternate fictional universe please don’t think too much about it). 


warm up sketch all started because of me still not getting over the upcoming《武神赵子龙》drama featuring snsd’s yoona as zilong’s love interest (a lady xiahou at that omg 子龙你要抢老婆吗). i mean like, i thought everyone’s 100% sure historically the dude doesn’t like girls. 

(zihuan yelling at a distance what do you mean yoona is just aesthetically pleasant BLASPHEMY all of SNSD are divine angels 女神 ALRIGHT)

and then next is yide rolling his eyes at his mom when she asks him when he’s settling down with a nice girl. relevant because cny is around the corner lol.

it’s not like yunchang is ashamed or hiding he just really doesn’t think it’s any of your business, like he won’t even discuss his family or his love life with his brothers, what makes you think he will with you?

when xuande says he loves ppl he means it, in the way that you want to believe in what you’re saying, if that makes sense. because deep down he hates people, he hates how rotten and selfish people are irl, he hates how society treated him a poor boy growing up with a single mother at the bad part of baoding, he hates that he knows he has to be like them to survive in this world. but he wants to believe in the potential of people, and not just in their potential (which is something cao cao would say), but in their goodness. i guess that’s why he was so taken with yide and yunchang when they met in the train station. good people were something of a theory to him until he met them. sometimes he feels guilty, like, he knows he’s a bundle of contradictions, what does that mean, is he lying to them? look at that, the big irony: one of them can’t lie, and the other hates liars, and here their big brother is a big fat liar. he tries to be the da-ge they think he is.it’s always good to have your goal dangled in front of you, you’ll eventually reach it one day.