Photographer's Note

Chinese folding fan with a very famous writing of Wang Xizhi on it, whose work 'the Preface of Orchid Pavilion Collection'(AD.353), shown as the picture, was called King of Light Running Hand in Chinese calligraphy history. A translation of the writing as below (but very hard for good translation):

The Orchid Pavilion
In the ninth year of the reign Yungho[A.D.353] in the beginning of late spring we met at the Orchid Pavilion in Shanyin of Kweich'i for the Water Festival, to wash away the evil spirits. Here are gathered all the illustrious persons and assembled both the old and the young. Here are tall mountains and majestic peaks, trees with thick foliage and tall bamboos. Here are also clear streams and gurgling rapids, catching one's eye from the right and left. We group ourselves in order, sitting by the waterside, and drinking in succession from a cup floating down the curving stream; and although there is no music from string and wood-wind instruments, yet with alternate singing and drinking, we are well disposed to thoroughly enjoy a quiet intimate conversation. Today the sky is clear, the air is fresh and the kind breeze is mild. Truly enjoyable it is sit to watch the immense universe above and the myriad things below, traveling over the entire landscape with our eyes and allowing our sentiments to roam about at will, thus exhausting the pleasures of the eye and the ear.
Now when people gather together to surmise life itself, some sit and talk and unburden their thoughts in the intimacy of a room, and some, overcome by a sentiment, soar forth into a world beyond bodily realities. Although we select our pleasures according to our inclinations —some noisy and rowdy, and others quiet and sedate—yet when we have found that which pleases us, we are all happy and contented, to the extent of forgetting that we are growing old. And then, when satiety follows satisfaction, and with the change of circumstances, change also our whims and desires, there then arises a feeling of poignant regret. In the twinkling of an eye, the objects of our former pleasures have become things of the past, still compelling in us moods of regretful memory. Furthermore, although our lives may be long or short, eventually we all end in nothingness. "Great indeed are life and death", said the ancients. Ah! What sadness!
I often study the joys and regrets of the ancient people, and as I lean over their writings and see that they were moved exactly as ourselves, I am often overcome by a feeling of sadness and compassion, and would like to make those things clear to me. Well I know it is a lie to say that life and death are the same things, and that longevity and early death make no difference! Alas! As we of the present look upon those of the past, so will posterity look upon our present selves. Therefore, have I put down a sketch of these contemporaries and their sayings at this feast, and although time and circumstances may change, the way they will evoke our moods of happiness and regret will remain the same. What will future readers feel when they cast their eyes upon this writing.

兰亭集序 王羲之

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Photo Information
  • Copyright: z y wei (drweizy) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 80 W: 0 N: 58] (536)
  • Genre: People
  • Medium: Color
  • Date Taken: 2014-08-20
  • Categories: Artwork
  • Exposure: f/3.5, 1/30 seconds
  • More Photo Info: view
  • Photo Version: Original Version
  • Date Submitted: 2014-08-19 20:53
Viewed: 1593
Points: 2
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Additional Photos by z y wei (drweizy) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 80 W: 0 N: 58] (536)
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