Chinese scholar's rocks
Chinese scholars' rocks (Chinese: 供石; pinyin: gōngshí), also known as scholar stones or viewing stones, are naturally occurring or shaped rocks which are traditionally appreciated by Chinese scholars.
Scholars rocks can be any color, and contrasting colors are not uncommon. The size of the stone can also be quite varied: scholars rocks can weigh either hundreds of pounds or less than one pound. The term also identifies stones which are placed in traditional Chinese gardens.
The origin of the stone is a notable feature.
- Lingbi stone (Lingbishi) from Lingbi, Anhui province, limestone
- Taihu stone (Taihushi) from Lake Tai, Jiangsu province, limestone
- Yingde stone (Yingshi or Yingdeshi) from Yingde, Guangdong province, limestone
The aesthetics of a scholar's rock is based on subtleties of color, shape, markings, surface, and sound. Prized qualities include:
- awkward or overhanging asymmetry
- resonance or ringing when struck
- representation or resemblance to mountainous landscapes or figure
- moistness or glossy surface
- Metropolitan Museum of Art, "The World of Scholars' Rocks Gardens, Studios, and Paintings"; retrieved 2012-12-20.
- Harvard Shanghai Center, "Scholar Stone"; retrieved 2012-12-20.
- Brokaw, Charles. (2011). The Temple Mount Code, p. 73.
- Cousins, Craig. (2006). Bonsai Master Class, p. 246.
- Lingbi Stone and Asian Art Collection. (2014)
- Cousins, p. 247.
- Mendelson, John. "Chinese scholars' rocks simultaneously original and simulacrum" at ArtNet.com, 1996; retrieved 2012-12-20>
- Smith, Roberta (1996-05-31). "ART REVIEW;Old Chinese Rocks: Rorschach Blots In 3 Dimensions". New York Times. Retrieved 2014-07-10.
- Harvard Museums, "Scholar's rock", 1993 painting; Linrothe, Robert N. (2004). Paradise and Plumage: Chinese Connections in Tibetan Arhat Painting, p. 24; retrieved 2012-12-20.
- Little, Stephen, Spirit stones of China, the Ian and Susan Wilson collection of Chinese stones, paintings, and related scholars' objects, Chicago, Art Institute of Chicago, 1999, ISBN 0-86559-173-3
Media related to Scholar's rocks at Wikimedia Commons