Five elements in harmony

Lü Shoukun, Huang Bore, Jiang Qingshuang, Chang ShangpuMid-1960s

Hong Kong Museum of Art

Hong Kong Museum of Art

This painting was completed by Lü Shoukun, Huang Bore and their two students. Using a semi-abstract manner, a harmonious state is captured here, achieved by the balance of the Taoist "five elements", that is, metal, wood, water, fire and earth. Lü Shoukun used simple strokes to outline the sun, and then drew the flame under it with burnt ink to present the element of "fire". Huang Bore painted the bushes in the bottom right-hand corner to show the presence of "earth" and "wood". Their students Jiang Qingshuang and Chang Shangpu painted the pavilions, mountain and the boats on the river in the upper part. Pavilions and boats are classified under the element "metal", while the river represents "water".

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  • Title: Five elements in harmony
  • Creator: Lü Shoukun, Huang Bore, Jiang Qingshuang, Chang Shangpu
  • Date: Mid-1960s
  • Theme: Landscape
  • Physical Dimensions: w95 x h93 cm
  • Artist Biography: Huang Bore (1901 - 1968) was born in Dongguan and brought up in Guangzhou, Guangdong. He arrived in Hong Kong in 1926 and was an active member of the Hong Kong cultural scene. Lü Shoukun (1919 - 1975) was Huang's friend and also a prominent artist in Hong Kong. He developed "Zen Painting" by blending philosophical concepts of Taoism and Buddhism with Chinese ink painting techniques in a distinctive manner. He initiated the New Ink Painting Movement, which significantly impacted Hong Kong art circles. Jiang Qingshuang and Chang Shangpu learned painting under Huang's and Lü's tutelage.
  • Type: Ink and colour on paper