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The Summer Resort

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Period: Qing dynasty (1644-1911)
Medium: color on silk
Format: hanging scroll

Artist(s): Leng Mei (ca.1670-1742)

Dimensions:  h: 254.8 cm, w: 172.5 cm

The painter wrote, "Humbly painted by courtier Leng Mei". He affixed two seals: "Courtier Leng Mei (Chen Leng Mei)" and "Diligent work through the night (Suye feixie)"   

Leng Mei painted in a realistic style the back garden of the Summer Resort (Bishu shanzhuang, or literally, Moutain Villa to Escape the Heat ) and its surrounding mountains. The composition is a panoramic view of the landscape. The objects in the painting were delicately painted. The pale purple-red complements the heavy green and blue, successfully creating a quiet atmosphere.   

The painting boasts a variety of brush styles. The rocks and trees were textured with a dry brush or washed by green and blue colors. Besides the traditional boundary painting method (jiehua), the painter also adopted western perspective to draw the buildings, which gives a vivid sense of distance and depth in the landscape. As an architectural document of historical value, the painting has been instrumental in studying the details of Kangxi period (1662-1722) architecture.   

Five authentication seals were affixed, including those of the Qianlong (r.1736-1795), Jiaqing (r. 1796-1820), and Xuantong (r. 1909-1911) emperors.

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