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Yang Ning-shi

Yang Ning-shi

楊凝式 tzu ching-du景度, hao Feng-tzu 疯子, Xu-bai 虚白, Huayang Ren 华阴人. 873?–954

Yang Ning-shi 楊凝式 tzu ching-du景度, hao Feng-tzu 疯子, Xu-bai 虚白, Huayang Ren 华阴人. 873?–954. Yang Ning-shi came from a high-ranking official family. Judging from the description of his physique, he was a hunchback. After the fall of the Tang Dynasty, he served successive dynasties in turn. Having no interest in serving in such a troubled and dangerous time, Yang Ning-shi focused more and more on calligraphy over the years. His calligraphic training was based on the following works: Ouyang Xunya歐陽詢and Yan Zhen-qing颜真卿 however, the individuality of his style is associated with the psychotechnics of "cross-break" (heng yi 横逸), which brings him closer to the masters of eccentric cursive writing. Defending his inner freedom, the calligrapher increasingly initiated eccentric, strange antics, for which he received the nickname "Jan-madman". Such a reputation in the context of the tradition of the "wind and flow" direction (fengliu) meant recognition of his talent.

In cursive, Yang Ning-shi followed Zhang Xiu張旭and Huai-su怀素 but his calligraphy is free from both the sensuality of the former and the calculation of the latter. Yang Ning-shi changed the amplitude of the brush movement with intriguing surprise and rapid ease. His style is distinguished by the sloping slant of both individual features and signs in general. The inspired spontaneity of his calligraphy is much closer to the spirit of the Two Vans (Er Wan), than the creations of the Tang masters of cursive writing. Inheriting the tradition of outstanding representatives of Madmen calligraphy (feng dian shu疯颠书Yang Ning-shi nevertheless keeps the style of his works in the gap between orderliness and randomness, between thoughtful normality and explosive spontaneity, between perfection and roughness. Yang Ning-shi's high level of skill allows him to work with a brush simply, without any external effects, which makes his calligraphy inherent in the "sublime spontaneity" (tian zhen lan man天眞爛漫). Scrolls are attributed to His brush Xia shu te夏熟帖, Ju hua te韭花帖and Shen xian qi jiu fa神仙起居法帖 (all ‑ Gugong Museum, Beijing). Yang Ning-shi was also a master of large-format calligraphy, which he used to cover the walls of temples, but it has not been preserved.

In terms of the scale of Yang Ning-shi's work, Chinese experts compared him to Yan Zhen-qing in this connection, there is a stable expression "Yang and Yang", which denoted the two highest points in the development of calligraphy VII–X Chinese authors are unanimous in their assessment of Yang Ning-shi's work as a bridge between the era of rule of law in the Tang era and the new heyday of semi-rule in the subsequent Song Dynasty. The calligrapher departs from the ethical pathos of the leading Tang masters and develops the tradition towards the more subjective principle of "idea primacy" (Shang yi 尚意His style was influenced by such luminaries of Sung calligraphy as Huang Ting-jian黄庭堅, Mi Fu米芾and many others.

Timeline

873
Yang Ning-shi was born in People’s Republic of China.

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