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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 999: III International Conference on Landscape and Urban Horticulture

POETIC AND PICTURESQUE IMAGINATION IN THE ART OF THE CHINESE CLASSICAL GARDEN

Author:   Zeng Wei
Keywords:   garden design, artistic language, artistic conception, garden history
DOI:   10.17660/ActaHortic.2013.999.28
Abstract:
The formation and development of any form of art do not occur in isolation and are certain to connect with similar things in its surroundings. Uncovering the hidden universality of different arts is a critical approach to recognizing and understanding the essence of arts which certainly include the art of gardening. The high artistic level Chinese classical gardens achieved are mainly accredited to the nurture of traditional Chinese culture. Poetry, prose and drawings in particular have provided inspirations for landscape gardeners. Through applying the connections among different arts and integrating poetic and pictorial arts in its creation, the romance of ancient poetry and drawings can be felt not only from the garden as a whole but also its parts.
Different arts can be traced back to the same origin. Creating a garden is similar to drawing a painting or writing a poem in the sense that drawing arts can provide direct reference in techniques for landscape gardeners while poetic arts may help improve the layout and design of gardens and supply the inspiration for the conception of the garden. Therefore, the Chinese classical garden is said to be a painting with three dimensions and a poem without words, which suggest that without certain understandings in paintings, poetry and prose, a landscape gardener would not be able to create a garden with poetic and picturesque imagination. Studies on gardening from the perspective of the universality of poetic and drawing art as well as the perspective of the integrity of Chinese arts and culture will bring us new thinking and enlightenments, which is of practical significance in studying many issues such as modern environmental art, tradition and innovation, development and inheritance.

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