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Identification and Creation
Object Number
2011.15
People
Fung Ming Chip, Chinese (born 1951)
Title
"Because of the void everything is possible. Without the void nothing is possible.", Written in Bold Black Script
Classification
Calligraphy
Work Type
album leaf
Date
2009
Places
Creation Place: East Asia, China, Hong Kong
Culture
Chinese
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/336547
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Album leaf; ink on paper; with artist signature reading Ming Chip shu (i.e., Mingqiu shu); with three seals of the artist; written in Bold Black Script
Dimensions
Calligraphy proper: H. 39.2 x W. 64.9 cm (15 7/16 x 25 9/16 in.)
Mounting: H. 50 x W. 70.1 cm (19 11/16 x 27 5/8 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • seal: This calligraphic work is signed and includes three seals of the artist, all of which identify it as a work of Fung Ming Chip. The dated signature and the three seals, which the artist himself carved, and their locations can be described as follows:

    Written in Bold Black Script and occupying the left two-thirds of the album leaf, the dated signature reads:

    貳零零九年明秋書于深圳四不館 Er ling ling jiu nian Mingqiu shu yu Shenzhen Si Bu Guan

    The signature can be translated as:

    [In the] year 2009, Ming Chip wrote [this] in [his] Si Bu Guan [i.e., Studio of the Four No’s] in Shenzhen

    The three artist seals can be characterized as follows:

    Upper right: Rectangular, red, relief seal reading Si Bu Guan 四不館 (Artist’s studio name)
    Middle left: Square, red, relief seal reading Ming Chip (Ming Qiu) 明秋 (Artist’s given name)
    Lower left: Square, red, relief seal reading Dui Cuo Yi Sheng 對錯一生 (“Right and wrong in life”)

    Note that the seal reading Si Bu Guan refers to the artist’s studio: the “Studio of the Four No’s”
  • inscription: The inscribed text reads as follows:

    以有空義
    故壹切皆得成
    若無空義者
    壹切皆不成

    The text above can be translated as follows:

    Because of the void everything is possible. Without the void nothing is possible.
Provenance
Fung Ming Chip, Hong Kong (2009-2010), sold; to Susan L. Beningson, New York, 2010, gift; to Harvard Art Museums, 2011.

Footnotes:
This work was created by Fung Ming Chip in Hong Kong in 2009.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift of Susan L. Beningson and Steve Arons in memory of Renée Beningson
Accession Year
2011
Object Number
2011.15
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
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Descriptions
Description
This large, horizontally oriented, rectangular album leaf is inscribed with seven columns of text, the columns with varying numbers of characters. The calligraphy on this album leaf was inscribed by Fung Ming Chip (b. 1951; standard Mandarin transcription: Feng Mingqiu). The three columns at the right of the composition are the main text and are written in "xingshu", or cursive script; the four columns that occupy the remaining two-thirds of the composition are the signature and date and also are written in "xingshu", but in a manner the artist characterizes as Bold Black Script. The text itself comprises twenty characters in three columns, as follows: eight characters in the right column; seven characters in the middle column; and five characters in the left column. The boldly written signature comprises fourteen characters in four columns, as follows: three characters in the right column; four characters in the second column; three characters in the third column; and four characters in the left column. The leaf is dated to 2009 by inscription; for the numbers in the date, the artist used the elaborate characters that typically are reserved for official documents and business records. This album leaf includes three seals of the artist, which the artist himself carved; the seals and their locations can be described as follows:

Upper right: Rectangular, red, relief seal reading "Si Bu Guan" (Artist’s studio name)
Middle left: Square, red, relief seal reading "Ming Chip" (Ming Qiu) (Artist’s given name)
Lower left: Square, red, relief seal reading "Dui Cuo Yi Sheng" (“Right and wrong in life”)

The inscribed text can be translated as follows:
Because of the void everything is possible. Without the void nothing is possible.

The dated artist signature reads:
Er ling ling jiu nian Mingqiu shu yu Shenzhen Si Bu Guan

The signature can be translated as:
[In the] year 2009, Ming Chip wrote [this] in [his] Si Bu Guan [i.e., Studio of the Four No’s] in Shenzhen

The three artist seals can be characterized as follows:
Upper right: Rectangular, red, relief seal reading "Si Bu Guan" (Artist’s studio name)
Middle left: Square, red, relief seal reading "Ming Chip" (Ming Qiu) (Artist’s given name)
Lower left: Square, red, relief seal reading "Dui Cuo Yi Sheng" (“Right and wrong in life”)

Note that the seal reading "Si Bu Guan" refers to the artist’s studio: the “Studio of the Four No’s”




This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu