Art History Essay Example: Difference between Chinese and European Art: Landscape Painting

Landscape painting refers to the portrayal of pure surroundings in artwork. Chinese were probably the first people to seize pure sceneries in paint. The genre finally spread throughout the world and the Europeans adopted it in the 16th century, through the Renaissance interval. This essay will look at the differences between the two dominant cultures within the genre of landscape painting.

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Aesthetic Formula

The first distinction is the aesthetic foundation of the art. Chinese art was deeply influenced by Taoism, Buddhism and Confucian ideas.

Mentalism, which is a central perception of Taoism, is a outstanding characteristic of Chinese fantastic arts. In this regard, the artists did not strive to breed what they noticed, but somewhat they painted how they felt. It was a manifestation type of art, rather than mere reappearances. In Chinese panorama art, feelings and private feelings are embedded into the image. They didn’t simply reproduce an object primarily based on specifics and exact look of the item.

The artists didn’t paint objects while observing them.

They would take nature walks into the woods or mountains, observe and take in as much as they might. In the studio, they would put down on paper every little thing they remembered, primarily based on how they felt. They would let their soul and emotions take the lead, rather than their eyes. It is as a result of of this reason that there are numerous broad strokes and white spaces on Chinese panorama paintings. These voids and white areas had been an integral part of the drawings. Just like summary art, they impressed creativeness amongst viewers.

They didn’t have definite meaning and as a result, the white spaces challenged the viewers’ minds.

On the contrary, western work had been deeply influenced by Christianity. The belief that God is the creator of everything was at the center of the artists’ minds. They therefore sought to breed whatever God created in a perfect way. To them painting was like a divine calling that brought them nearer to God. European painters would set up shop in entrance of landscapes and reproduce them on canvases.

They strived to breed whatever they noticed with precise precision. They subsequently did not pour out their feelings or soul into their work. The only emotion they aroused was nostalgia among the viewers, as they linked the work with their own private experiences in the natural world. Overtime, painters deviated from the religious norm and set out on private experimental initiatives. This was known as Romanticism in artwork.

Although they had been predominantly panorama painters, they infused ideas of civilization into their works. They introduced people, shelters and animals into the landscapes- a
concept that was very overseas to the Chinese painters. Chinese panorama artists hardly ever used humans or any type of civilization of their artwork. They would give a glimpse of a sage or a hut with refined panorama backgrounds. This would guarantee all consideration is drawn to the gorgeous landscapes, quite than the only sage.

Technique and Composition

Another distinction between the two is the method utilized in compositions. Chinese panorama painters mainly used line and stroke. This technique was conventionally adopted in historic china to depict no matter was taking place within the artists’ minds. Another good method utilized by these artists was a classification process, the place the dominant object was known as the Host, while different objects had been thought to be Guests. The visitors had been of equal significance to the host, although they played a complimentary position.

More occasions than not, the mountains have been at all times the hosts. This is because all mountains were sacred to the Chinese. The mountains embody each aspect of living. They believed cosmic forces and common energies had been made manifest in them. It is due to this purpose that the first temples have been constructed on hillsides for folks to harness the facility of the mountains. Other objects, similar to clouds, timber, a hut, a sage and a cascade would play friends to the mountain varieties.

In western landscape painting, the concept of hosts and guests did not exist. All objects got equal measure of importance. Their main goal was to recreate the scene with utmost exactness, with out lacking a single element. They due to this fact utilized the use of shade, gentle and shadow, and patterns and textures to depict the actual appearance of objects. The paintings had components of nature, skies, horizons all incorporated into one.

Color Usage

Both forms of art utilized colours. It was the vary of shade use that differed. Chinese painters only used black and white colours. The paintings appear to be wealthy in hue because of two reasons: the use of prime quality Xuan paper and the fact that colours were blended with different amounts of water, which cleverly created an phantasm of richly hued portraits. The hosts/mountains have been depicted in black, while rivers and cascades were drawn in white.

Western landscape paintings utilized all forms of colours. They have been rich in hue and all components were depicted as they have been in real life. For example, vegetation were green and roses were both purple, white or yellow. They therefore had extra visual appeal than Chinese paintings. European painters used neutral colours within the background and visually appealing ones within the foreground. Also, unlike Chinese landscapes which have been boring, European paints utilized both light and shade that perfectly blended with the rich brilliant colours.


Chinese panorama work lacked perspective. They had no direct method and have been mostly two dimensional planes with voids and white spaces. Their abstract nature and lack of proper direction gave viewers the chance to ponder about their that means, with out a lot to rely on but their own sense of individual perceptions. Western panorama painters were extra direct in their strategy. They recreated the physical surroundings that was already etched in the viewers’ recollections and gave them a chance to reconnect with their environment again, albeit emotionally.

Although these two cultures shared the identical genre of portray, there were obvious components of their art types that separated them apart. While the Chinese paintings were two dimensional, twin coloured work that lacked perspective, western landscape paintings were real depiction of the natural surroundings that had been rich in color and utilized each gentle and shade. Despite their variations, these landscape portraits are wealthy in artistry and still mesmerize viewers to today.


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