Auction | China Guardian (HK) Auctions Co., Ltd.
2019 Autumn Auctions
Asian 20th Century and Contemporary Art

Shiy De-Jinn (1923-1981)
Historic House at Xiu Shui(Painted in 1981)

Watercolour on paper

64 x 100 cm. 25 1/4 x 39 3/8 in.

Signed in Chinese and dated on bottom right

2005, Aphrodite Sacrifice: Shiy De-Jinn, Unitas Publishing Co., Taipei, p. 180
16 – 28 Jun 1981, Shiy De-Jinn Selection Exhibition, Printmaking Art Gallery, Longmen Art Projects, Apollo Art Gallery, Taipei

Private collection, Asia

Exquisite Ridges and Eaves: the Grand Beauty of the Historic House
Shiy De-Jinn's Classical Sensibility

In 1966, when Shiy De-Jinn returned to Taiwan from France, he devoted himself to exploring Taiwanese folk culture. For ten years, he visited numerous old buildings and ancient towns, regarding “protecting and passing on architectural inheritance” as his responsibility. Thanks to his realistic strokes, he was able to capture the classical beauty of old temples and houses, thus reaching the culmination of his artistic creation. Despite his deteriorating health during his later years, Shiy still created amazingly beautiful works of art, all thanks to his perseverance, enthusiasm, and dedication. Historic House at Xiushui, created in 1981, is a testimony to Xi's creative practice during the last year of his life.

Incorporation of Calligraphy: a Highlight of the Grandeur of Ancient Architecture
While studying at the National Hangzhou School of Arts, Shiy was greatly influenced by Lin Fengmian's teaching to “use lines to express shapes and grasp the essence of the portrayed.” When Shiy lived in France during his early years, he was influenced by Buffet's thick black lines, and after returning to Taiwan, he incorporated calligraphic techniques into his painting, creating beautiful and majestic depictions of architecture, of which the work Historic House at Xiushui is a typical example. The artist outlined the shape of the building using simple brushstrokes. The style of the gable walls and the swallowtail roof is the perfect example of the “starting like silkworm, ending like swallow” rule present in all clerical scripts. It brings unique symmetry and an unconvoluted feeling and is also related to Shiy's inspiration drawn from Han-era clerical script during his later years. The painting features the Historic House at Xiushui, one of Taiwan's three most famous ancient buildings. The red façade shows the prominent position of the owner of the house; the rich watercolors convey a poetic atmosphere; and the straight brush strokes emphasize the many years that passed since the building was erected. During Shiy's later years, he liked to present the grandeur of ancient architecture using a sense of peace and serenity.

After the work was completed, it was a part of the Shiy De-Jinn's Selection Exhibition held in June 1981. During this exhibition, Shiy explained Historic House at Xiushui while wearing the costume of a Qing dynasty senior official, emphasizing the importance the artist himself attached to this piece.

Price estimate:
HKD: 450,000 – 650,000
USD: 57,400 – 82,900

Auction Result:
HKD: 1,121,000



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