Picture of the New Year

Zhao ChangSung Dynasty (late 10th Century) - Sung Dynasty (early 11th Century)

National Palace Museum

National Palace Museum
Taipei, Taiwan

Zhao Chang (style name Changzhi) was a native of Chengdu in Sichuan. Excelling at painting flowers, he went out every morning in the dew to capture the scenery, using a method he called "sketching from life." In Guo Ruoxu's Record of Experiences in Painting is a section that mentions "palace-filling flowers." It was a kind of hanging scroll format specially designed for the court, in which Xu Xi (fl. 9th-10th c.) depicted flowers and exotic rocks on fine silk combined with birds and insects. Also known as "hall-decorating flowers," this kind of work features an arrangement of many motifs in a fine yet complex composition that intentionally does not seek to express scenery as it appears in nature. The choice of the title and composition for "Picture of the New Year" here is not without reason, for it is still in the tradition of Xu Xi's "palace-filling flowers." Although two characters for the signature "Servitor Chang" appear here, the brushwork and painting style suggest the work of a post-Song dynasty (960-1279) painter.


  • Title: Picture of the New Year
  • Creator: Zhao Chang
  • Date Created: Sung Dynasty (late 10th Century) - Sung Dynasty (early 11th Century)
  • Physical Dimensions: w512 x h1038 cm
  • Type: Painting
  • Rights: National Palace Museum, Taipei City, Taiwan (R.O.C.)

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