‘Where the Truth Lies: The Art of Qiu Ying’ at LACMA
Qiu Ying (c. 1494–c. 1552) is one of the most enigmatic painters in Chinese history. Other than the name of his home town (Taicang in Jiangsu province) little is known about his life. Yet he rose to become one of the most celebrated artists of the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) and, by the late Ming, was included in the group known as the ‘Four Masters of the Wu School’, which dominated painting in Suzhou in the late 15th and early to mid-16th centuries. He is said to have been illiterate, yet surviving evidence shows that he was not only literate but capable of elegant writing. He is said to have had few followers, yet he was actually the most copied painter in Chinese history.