The God of Longevity, With Attendant

Ren Yi

Gallery 13,
The Khoan and Michael Sullivan Gallery of Chinese Painting

Related Objects in the Ashmolean Museum:


1. Wisteria, Wu Changshuo
Gallery 13, in the low case directly opposite the Object of the Month.

The artist who produced this exquisite piece also provided the calligraphy for Ren Yis God of Longevity, With Attendant. First of all a renowned poet and calligrapher, only later considering himself a painter, Wu Changshuo has captured the beautiful form of this mauve-coloured wisteria. Notice how the soft and delicate rendering of the hanging flowers contrasts with the bold inked outlines of the leaves.


Exit the Chinese Paintings Gallery via the stairs near the small lift. Once in the next gallery, look in the first case to your right.

2. Inkstone
Bottom shelf, centre
This highly decorative and colourful inkstone would have been used in the painting process. The ink, in stick form, would have been ground with water into the white part of the inkstone and the resulting liquid ink would have collected in the small well, ready to be used.

3. Brushrests
Middle shelf
These two blue and white brushrests are designed to hold four brushes.

4. Sealstones
Floor case to your left.
Most of these sealstones are imperial and carved with suitably grand decorations. However, at least one (a small, but tall, brownish seal stone with accession number 1970.49) belonged to an artist and may well have been used to authenticate his work. The inscription on the side reads [Engraved by] Sanqiao.... Sanqiao was a pen name of Weng Pen (1489-1573), a famous painter, poet and seal carver.