An Old Man Walking by a Stream, with Distant Mountains
Wu Li, an acclaimed Qing dynasty painter, expressed himself through the styles of a select lineage of past artists. Here, sparse trees and an empty pavilion allude to Ni Zan (1301–1374), but Wu Li has reworked the dry, sketchy style of the Yuan dynasty master by incorporating loose, moist brushstrokes to create a richer tonality. Wu Li’s reinterpretation may have been influenced by an increasing awareness of Western artistic techniques, such as chiaroscuro and one-point perspective. Wu Li converted to Christianity in the 1670s, allowing him close contact with the missionaries who brought new images and skills to China from the West.
Ink and color on paper
image: 50 3/4 x 13 1/2 in. (128.9 x 34.3 cm)
mount: 22 3/4 x 100 in. (57.8 x 254 cm) (show scale)
Inscribed with a poem, with two seals of the artist and five deals of various collectors.
Signed: "Mojing daoren Wu Li"
"Lonely old trees lean on a riverbank. new wabes hit the foot of rocks. Distant mountains hold the sunset, there is nobody in the autumn shadow of a thatched pavilion."
Gift of the Asian Art Council
Four colophons on the mounting brocade; one by Guo Ling (1767-1831), and one by Wu Rongguang (1759-1834). Landscape in the Ni Zan (1301-1374) style, depicting an old man walking by a stream in the middle ground, with a pavilion under trees and distant mountains in the background.
Dated "A Winter month of the year bingxu (1706)."
Condition: cracks in the painting, but stable.
This item is not on view
Wu Li (Chinese, 1632-1718). An Old Man Walking by a Stream, with Distant Mountains, 1706. Ink and color on paper, image: 50 3/4 x 13 1/2 in. (128.9 x 34.3 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of the Asian Art Council, 1990.71 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1990.71_PS6.jpg)
overall, 1990.71_PS6.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2011
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
No known copyright restrictions
This work may be in the public domain in the United States. Works created by United States and non-United States nationals published prior to 1923 are in the public domain, subject to the terms of any applicable treaty or agreement.
You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this work. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form
The Museum does not warrant that the use of this work will not infringe on the rights of third parties, such as artists or artists' heirs holding the rights to the work. It is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions before copying, transmitting, or making other use of protected items beyond that allowed by "fair use," as such term is understood under the United States Copyright Act.
The Brooklyn Museum makes no representations or warranties with respect to the application or terms of any international agreement governing copyright protection in the United States for works created by foreign nationals.
For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress
, Cornell University
, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums
, and Copyright Watch
For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright
If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome
any additional information you might have.