Ma Lin (painter)

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Ma Lin, Quietly Listening to Wind in the Pines 靜聽松風. Ink and color on silk. National Palace Museum, Taiwan.

Ma Lin (simplified Chinese: 马麟; traditional Chinese: 馬麟; pinyin: Mǎ Lín; Wade–Giles: Ma Lin) (ca. 1180 – after 1256[1]) was a Chinese court painter during the Song dynasty active during the early to mid 13th century.[2] He was the son of the famous Chinese painter Ma Yuan,[3] from whom he learned the art of painting.[4]

One of his best known paintings is Night Outing with Candles, which depicts a gentleman sitting in the doorway of a pavilion, facing four pairs of tall candles amongst flowering crab apple trees. It illustrates a poem by the famous (dissident poet and artist) Su Shi: "My fear is that in the depths of night, the flowers will fall asleep and depart, so I light the tall candles to illuminate their red beauty.".[5] A full moon in the sky overhead confirms its nighttime setting.


  1. ^ Wen C. Fong Beyond Representation: Chinese Painting and Calligraphy, 8Th-14th Century (1992), p. 299
  2. ^ Barnhart: Page 133.
  3. ^ "Ma Lin - Quietly Listening to Wind in the Pines". Archived from the original on 2014-02-22. Retrieved 2012-08-05.
  4. ^ Yuheng Bao, Ben Liao, Letitia Lane, Renaissance in China (2006), p. 61
  5. ^ Wang Yao-t'ing, Looking at Chinese Painting, Nigensha Publishing Co. Ltd., Tokyo, Japan (first English edition 1996), p, 88. ISBN 4-544-02066-2


  • Barnhart, R. M. et al. (1997). Three thousand years of Chinese painting. New Haven, Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-07013-6

External links[edit]

  • Sung and Yuan paintings, an exhibition catalog from The Metropolitan Museum of Art Libraries (fully available online as PDF), which contains material on Ma Lin (see list of paintings)