Zhang Zhi (calligrapher)

Zhang Zhi (simplified Chinese: 张芝; traditional Chinese: 張芝; pinyin: Zhāng Zhī; Wade–Giles: Chang Chih, died 192), courtesy name Boying (伯英), was a Chinese calligrapher during the Han dynasty. Born in Jiuquan, Gansu, he was a pioneer of the modern cursive script, and was traditionally honored as the Sage of Cursive Script (草聖).[1] Furthermore, he is known as one of the Four Talented Calligraphers (四賢) in Chinese calligraphy.[2]

Biography edit

Despite the great fame he enjoyed in ancient times, no veritable works of Zhang Zhi's have survived. A catchphrase is attributed to him: "Too busy to write cursively" (匆匆不暇草書),[3] which shows that the execution of cursive script, though originally invented for the sake of time-saving, requires a tranquil frame of mind.[4]

References edit

  1. ^ Poon, KS Vincent. "Zhang Zhi 張芝 法帖 Translation Interpretation". Vincent's Calligraphy. Retrieved 2021-03-05.
  2. ^ "A Narrative on Calligraphy". Vincent's Calligraphy. Retrieved 2017-11-15.
  3. ^ There is a similar Chinese proverb: "Too hasty to write in cursive script; too impoverished to prepare a vegetarian meal." (信速不及草書,家貧難辦素食) Compare the well-known quote by Pascal: "Je n'ai fait celle-ci plus longue que parce que je n'ai pas eu le loisir de la faire plus courte." (in Lettres provinciales)
  4. ^ "Footnotes on A Narrative on Calligraphy Part V". Vincent's Calligraphy. Retrieved 2017-11-15.

Bibliography edit