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Journeys in Time 2010-05-09 National Treasures - Genuine and fake national treasures

05-09-2010 16:33 BJT

 

Intro:
China, of course, has a rich history of calligraphy and painting. For many centuries, collecting paintings and works of calligraphy was a popular hobby for pretty well everyone, from the emperor and senior officials, down to scholars and ordinary people. But the problem they all faced, was identifying genuine works from imitations and forgeries. In the early 1960s, a nationwide campaign was launched across China, to authenticate ancient calligraphy and paintings. The work was soon suspended, however, due to the Cultural Revolution. But it resumed in the 1980s, when the Ancient Chinese Painting and Calligraphy Authentication Group was formed. It brought together leading art experts.

Qi Xu was a great painter who lived about a thousand years ago, at the time of the Northern Song Dynasty. He is noted in particular for his paintings of oxen. ‘Grazing and the Landscape’ is his only work that is known to have survived. Originally part of the collection at the Imperial Palace, it ended up being confiscated from an ordinary household.

It’s only natural for experts to have different opinions about certain works of art. What was important, was to find the best way of settling their disputes without forcing anyone to compromise.

Outro:
Seventeen years passed from when the Ancient Chinese Painting and Calligraphy Authentication Group was set up in 1983, until the 24-volume “Illustrated Catalogue of Selected Works of Ancient Chinese Painting and Calligraphy” was published. The catalogue is testament to the extraordinary work of the experts in discovering so many lost treasures. Like the great art works it records, the book is a precious treasure for future generations to enjoy.

Editor:James |Source: CNTV.CN

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