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Paintings about the Dragon Boat Festival

2013-06-08 14:58:01

(chinaculture) By Liu fang


A long-scroll painting of the Painting of Nine Songs, held in the Jilin Museum in China, painted by Zhang Wo, the Yuan Dynasty (

In 1616, Chen Hongshou drew 11 inserts within two days for Xiaoshan Laiqin's Notes for The Songs of Chu (Chu Ci Shu Zhu). They were created in accordance with Qu Yuan's Nine Songs (Jiu Ge). Chen then made a woodcut painting called Qu Yuan Sang while Walking (Quzi Xing Yin Tu), which reveals the scene when Qu Yuan was banished to Xupu Xian County. Since then, people have regarded Qu Yuan's appearance as it is shown in the drawing. In the Qing Dynasty, Huang Yingchen drew Qu Yuan Divined How to Conduct Himself (Qu Yuan Bu Ju Tu) under Emperor Shunzhi's order.

In modern times, Fu Baoshi and Lu Yanshao also created such works. In the 1940s, Fu Baoshi began to draw portraits for Qu Yuan to commemorate his loyalty and literary achievements, and to inspire more people to struggle for China's future. Fu's Portrait of Qu Yuan (Qu Yuan Tu), kept in the Palace Museum, exhibits how Qu Yuan behaved when he was banished, as described in Fisherman (Yu Fu). Fu also drew pictures about Qu Yuan in the summer of 1942 and on the Dragon Boat Festival of 1947 respectively. In 2007, a portrait of Qu Yuan drawn by Lu Shaoyan was sold at the price of 1.05 millon.

For the Dragon Boat Festival, people also shoot arrows and hang portraits of Zhong Kui. According to The History in the Jin Dynasty• Ceremonies (Jin Shi•Li Zhi), in the fifth day of the fifth lunar month, people would ride a horse, shoot arrows at willow branches and try to take the branches. In the Ming Dynasty, such a game had also become a show among noblemen. (From

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