QING DYNASTY (1644-1911)
The dark green-coloured duan inkstone is rectangular in shape and is inscribed on the underside with a poem, which reads:
|雨聽窗前風||He listened in rain to the wind at the window,|
|披月下綠天||Wore moonlight when he went down to “Green Sky.”|
Huaisu (725-785) was so poor that he could not afford to buy paper to practice calligraphy on, so he planted a whole field of bananas, to use their leaves as paper, which he called his “Green Sky.”
|學懷素之書白雪仿王維之畫||Emulate the calligraphy of Huaisu and, for white snow, the painting of Wang Wei [699–759].|
|為黼堂仁兄銘||Inscribed by Kind Elder Brother Futang|
Futang is the personal name of Zhang Dalin 張大林 (dates unknown). Zhang’s sobriquet was Yizhai 易齋 (Easeful Studio) and he was a native of Wujiang 吳江, Jiangsu. He was an accomplished painter in both fine line and splayed, wide brush painting. Although principally a flower-and-bird painter, he also excelled at landscape and figure painting. The inkstone is signed by ‘Younger Brother Bao Jun’ 弟鮑俊 and carved in relief is the seal Bao Jun siyin, the “Personal Seal of Bao Jun” 鮑俊私印. Bao Jun 鮑俊 (1797-1851), a native of Xiangshanchang 香山場 in Zhuhai 珠海, poet, painter and calligrapher, was known as a “Great Talent of Lingnan 嶺南大才子. A successful degree candidate, he rose to high offices and was appointed a scholar in the Hanlin Academy. The Daoguang Emperor praised him as “the very best of calligraphers (shufa guanchang 書法冠場). In 1841 he retired from office and retired to his native place. His collected classical verse is entitled Rongtang shichao 榕堂詩鈔 (Draft Collection from Bayan Hall), and his collected lyrics is entitled Yixiage cichao 倚霞閣詞鈔 (Draft Lyrics from the Leaning on Rosy Clouds Pavilion).