Shitao Prints

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Info about Shitao

Shitao was a Chinese calligrapher and painter. He was born to a noble family in the Ming dynasty in a time of political upheaval. Having narrowly escaped disaster as a ten-year-old when the Ming dynasty was overthrown by a rebelling party, he became a Buddhist monk. As a monk, he traveled widely throughout China and remained well-connected to intellectual and cultural leaders both inside and outside the royal court.

Shitao belonged to a group of Chinese artists known as the Individualist painters. The Individualists transcended tradition to create their own unique styles, diverging from orthodox artists who adhered to the techniques and rules that dictated what was beautiful. While he respected the old masters, Shitao saw their work as something to build upon rather than imitate.

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