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Identification and Creation

Object Number
Liu Kuo Sung (Liu Guosong) 劉國松, Chinese (born 1932 )
Wintry Mountains Covered with Snow
Other Titles
Original Language Title: 寒山雪霽
Work Type
hanging scroll, painting
Persistent Link

Physical Descriptions

Hanging scroll; ink and light color on fibrous paper, with artist’s signature and seal
painting proper: 85.4 x 55.8 cm (33 5/8 x 21 15/16 in.)
silk mounting only: 197 x 66 cm (77 9/16 x 26 in.)
mounting, including cord and roller ends: 198.5 x 75 cm (78 1/8 x 29 1/2 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • Signed: Lower left, black ink: Liu Guosong (Chinese brush-written characters followed by a red seal reading "Liu Guosong"), 1964
  • seal: artist's square red intaglio seal, following signature: "Liu Guosong"
  • inscription: dated signature brush-written in black ink at lower left: "Liu Guosong yi jiu liu si" (Liu Guosong, 1964)


Recorded Ownership History
Liu Guosong, Taipei (1964), gift; to Chu-tsing Li, Lawrence, Kansas (1964-2012), gift; to his son B U.K. Li, Milwaukee, Wisconsin (2012-2013), gift; to Harvard Art Museums, 2013.

1. Dr. Chu-tsing Li (1920-2014)

Acquisition and Rights

Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, The Chu-tsing Li Collection, Gift of B U.K. Li in honor of Chu-tsing Li and in memory of Yao-wen Kwang Li and Teri Ho Li
© Liu Kuo-sung
Accession Year
Object Number
Asian and Mediterranean Art

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A grand peak rises above jagged cliffs, partially obscured by roiling winter storms. Reserved areas of paper create the illusion of snow, and white rifts in the brushwork convey the play of clouds over the mountain crags. These irregular gaps appear random and yet suggest a primordial fixity.
To produce these effects, Liu Guosong paints on an artisanal paper in which long, coarse fibers are preserved near the paper’s surface. After applying ink to the paper with a brush and by other means, he pulls out selected filaments to achieve a pictorial effect that is simultaneously representational and abstract.
Liu Guosong, founder of the Fifth Moon Group, came to prominence in Taipei in the 1950s and remained at the forefront of the movement. He had left mainland China for Taiwan in 1949. In recent years, Liu has exhibited on the mainland, and in 2007 his work was featured in the first solo exhibition ever given a living artist at the Palace Museum in Beijing. This painting was included in that landmark exhibition.

Publication History

  • Liu Kuo-sung, exh. cat., National Museum of History, Taipei (Taipei, Taiwan, 1966), p. 23
  • Chu-tsing Li, Liu Kuo-sung: The Growth of a Modern Chinese Artist, exh. cat. (Taipei, Taiwan, 1969), fig. 31
  • Robert D. Mowry and Claudia Brown, A Tradition Redefined: Modern and Contemporary Chinese Ink Paintings from the Chu-tsing Li Collection, 1950-2000, exh. cat., Harvard University Art Museums/Yale University Press (Cambridge, Mass., 2007), cat. 12
  • Palace Museum (Gugong Bowuyuan), ed., Yuzhou xinyin: Liu Guosong huihua yijiazi (Universe in the Mind: Sixty Years of Painting by Liu Guosong), exh. cat., Forbidden City Publishing House (Beijing, 2007), p. 33 (fig. 22) and p. 75

Exhibition History

  • A Tradition Redefined: Modern and Contemporary Chinese Ink Paintings from the Chu-tsing Li Collection, 1950-2000, Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 11/03/2007 - 01/27/2008; Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, 06/28/2008 - 09/14/2008; Norton Museum of Art, West Palm Beach, 10/11/2008 - 01/04/2009; Spencer Museum of Art, Lawrence, 02/11/2009 - 05/24/2009
  • Re-View: S228-230 (Asian rotation: 3), Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 11/04/2009 - 05/02/2010
  • Re-View: S228-230 (Asian rotation: 5) Brush and Ink Reconsidered: Contemporary Chinese Landscapes, Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 11/23/2010 - 05/14/2011
  • 32Q: 2600 East Asian, Japanese, Chinese and Korean, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 11/16/2014 - 05/31/2015
  • Liu Kuo-Sung, Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Arts, Kaohsiung, 12/21/2019 - 05/31/2020

Verification Level

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