Sea of Ink, By Richard Weihe

 

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The Independent Culture

The classical Chinese painter Bada Shanren (1626-1705) sloughed off many names, and many lives, but kept faithful to his technique and his vision.

In the form of 51 sketch-like sections (with paintings by the master punctuating the text), this delicate and moving Swiss novella tells his story.

Once a prince, then a monk, often a refugee as Qing ousted Ming, the artist stayed true to his free-spirited vocation: "Take a brush and some ink and simply paint your own style." Jamie Bulloch translates with a fittingly light touch.

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