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Qi Baishi «Peaches in a backet»

 

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

the subject work, ink and colour on paper,  51 cm. x 40 cm.

 

A seal of the artist  on the subject work:

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

About the artist

Qi Baishi (齐白石) (1864-1957) - was a Chinese painter, noted for the whimsical, often playful style of his watercolor works.

Born to a peasant family from Xiangtan, Hunan, Qi became a carpenter at 14, and learned to paint by himself. After he turned 40, he traveled, visiting various scenic spots in China.
After 1917 he settled in Beijing.

Some of Qi's major influences include the early Qing dynasty painter Bada Shanren (Zhu Da) and the Ming dynasty artist Xu Wei.

His pseudonyms include Qí Huáng (齊璜) and Qí Wèiqīng (齐渭清). The subjects of his paintings include almost everything, commonly animals, scenery, figures, toys, vegetables,and so on. He theorized that "paintings must be something between likeness and unlikeness, much like today's vulgarians, but not like to cheat popular people". In his later years, many of his works depict mice, shrimp or birds.

He was also good at seal carving and called himself "the rich man of three hundred stone seals" (三百石印富翁).

One of the most expensive paintings in Qi Baishi is the work «Towering Pine and Cypress Painting with Four-Character-Line Couplet in Seal Script» in 1945 was sold for 425.5 million yuan at China Guardian Auctions in May 2011 on the image below - a painting «Peaches», ink and colour on paper, sold on Christies in 2010

 

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Examples of similar style works by Qi Baishi:

 

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on the image below - a painting «Peaches
and butterflies», ink and colour on paper,
33.5 cm. x 68 cm.

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

on the image below - a painting «Peaches», ink and colour on paper, 100 x 34 cm.

 

 

Scope of the work:

Research of the subject work to determine whether the subject work is by Qi Baishi.
Contents:
1. Analysis of the seal
2. Analysis in infrared light
3. Analysis using terahertz equipment
4. Microscopic examination
5. Stylistic analysis
6. Analysis of black and white photographs and sepia mode
7. Analysis using a color inversion filter

 

Seal analysis

Our experts took samples of the original seal of Qi Baishi, followed by a comparative
analysis of the seals identified on the subject work.

 

Comparable seal of Qi Baishi

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

on the image below – seal on the subject work

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

as a result of comparative analysis it was concluded that a seal on the subject work corresponds to Qi Baishi seal 

 

One of the most effective methods of examination is an infrared reflectography. With the help of a special infra-red radiation, which penetrates the upper layers of the examination object, we investigated the layer directly below the visible surface (because the underlying layers are hidden).

This is particularly important for determining possible preliminary drawings under layers of paint or the signatures, inscriptions beneath the paintings. This method in combination with the terahertz equipment revealed the author's signature and inscriptions,presented on the images below.

Analysis was performed using a terahertz equipment (THz) to capture the internal structure of a work of art.

Teragertz images show features which can not be seen in the optical range or by using X-rays. This is achieved by allowing the terahertz waves penetrate into the inner layers of paint. Thus, the study revealed the hidden inscriptions and signatures , are not detected by other means, such as optical, X-ray or infrared region of the spectrum. (For the study it was used a commercial THz system «Mini-Z» produced by Zomega Terahertsz Corporation,(USA).

 

in the image below - the lower right corner of the subject work
- in the red rectangle - the location of the revealed seal
- in the green rectangle - a sample of genuine seal of Qi Baishi

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

in the image below - the upper left corner of the subject work
- in the red rectangle - the location of the revealed seal
- in the green rectangle - a sample of genuine seal of Qi Baishi

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

Microscopic examination (digital microscopy) - Research under the microscope (magnification x 600-fold). Study the painting when using the microscope - non-invasive method, which gave information about the method of construction of the layers in the film, as well as about whether the work was subjected to subsequent revision or restoration. Micrograph allowed to get a very clear idea of applying the technique of tiny strokes of paint. As a result, it was determined that the restoration is not performed to thesubject work.

 

The stylistic analysis

Comparative stylistic analysis of the subject work on the basis of similar works of the artist that was taken from official sources. After analysis of technology, writing style, length and direction of strokes were found similarities of the subject work with known works of the author.

 

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

as a result of a comparative analysis of the handwriting of the author with handwriting on the well-known works of Qi Baishi, were found the similarity of wrighting of hieroglyphs lines and the slope of the lines.

 

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Analysis in color inversion filter

Comparing analysis of subject work with samples of original works by Qi Baishi in color inversion mode revealed similarity of colors, composition and brush strokes technique.

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Comparative analysis of black-and-white color filter, and in sepia found similarities  in the style of writing, composition and brush strokes technique.

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Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

 

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

 

The subject work, verso

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 on the image below — back side of the subject work under special light filters

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in the image below - the lower right corner of the back side of the subject work
- in the red rectangle - the location of the revealed seal
- in the green rectangle - a sample of genuine seal of Qi Baishi

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

in the image below - the lower left corner of the back side of the subject work
- in the red rectangle - the location of the revealed seal
- in the green rectangle - a sample of genuine seal of Qi Baishi

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

Note: to protect their works, most artists put their signatures, seals and labels on the inner layers of the painting. Also, artists use the application of a signature for the purposes of selecting the necessary color gamma in the process of writing the work. By thus applying a signature to the still not dried layer in the process of work, the artist looks at the color transitions and thus achieves the color gamma that he needs.

Also, in order to protect the work, artists used translucent ink or a graphite pencil, making notes or their signature or seal. In the process of writing a picture, this is done several times, which explains their large number. On the reverse side of the artist’s work is likewise placed a large number of signatures, seals and labels.

In the process of writing the paintings, artists repeatedly make corrections to the drawing and the color palette. For this reason, the original signature is painted over with the next author's layer and applied on the new image anew in approximately the same place where it was originally located. Therefore, in one section there may be several signatures on different authorial layers, which are detected with the use of special
technical means.

In the subject work, the author's seals are in large numbers (more than 20 seals on each side). Seal are found all over the surface of the subject work. All seals have different sizes.

This research shows the seals that are best seen.

All seals on the subject work are visible to the naked eye. Using the equipment, we can increase their visibility and show in this report.

 

Conclusion:

As a result of the research of the subject work "Peaches in a backet", revealed several Qi Baishi's seals on the front and back sides of the subject work.

As a result of comparative analysis of it was concluded that a red seal on the subject work corresponds to Qi Baishi seal.

As a result of comparative analysis of hieroglyphs wrighting style it was concluded that  wrighing style of hieroglyphs on the subject work corresponds to Qi Baishi wrighting.

Comparison of the features of composition, color and artistic methods clearly shows that the subject work is the work of Qi Baishi.

 

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On the subject work were found watermarks in form of the name «Qi Baishi» in traditional chinese characters «齊白石»

 

on the image below — lower left corner of the subject work

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In order to reveal a watermarks, a special light filter were applied to the image of lower left corner of the subject work.

on the image — parameters of a light filter

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Below you can see the result after applying a special light filter.

on the image below — lower left corner of the subject work after applying special light filter
-in the red rectangle — revealed watermarks in form of a name of Qi Baishi in traditional chinese characters «齊白石»
- in the red rectangle — sample of chinese characters «齊白石»
- in the red rectangle — revealed digits «1930» - year of creation of the subject work, witch corresponds to the chinese characters wrighten on the front side «三十»(chinese «三十» means «30» in arabic digits)

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

The revealed watermarks in form of the name «齊白石» (Qi Baishi) are located on the whole surface of the subject work one by another.
on the image below — lower left corner of the back side of the subject work
-in the red rectangle — revealed watermarks in form of a name of Qi Baishi in traditional chinese characters «齊白石»
- in the red rectangle — sample of chinese characters «齊白石»

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

The revealed watermarks on original work by Qi Baishi

On the image below -  authentic painting by Qi Baishi «Monkey Contemplating Peach» thatwas sold on Christie's in 2011 for HKD 6,620,000 ( image taken from the Christie's website)
*source by the link: https://www.christies.com/lotfinder/Lot/qi-baishi-1863-1957-monkey-contemplating-peach-5442386-details.aspx

 

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On the authentic painting by Qi Baishi «Monkey Contemplating Peach» were revealed watermarks in form of the name «齊白石» (Qi Baishi).
That watermarks are located on the whole surface of the painting, same way ason the subject work.

on the image below — lower left corner of the painting by Qi Baishi «Monkey Contemplating Peach»

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

In order to reveal a watermarks, a special light filter were applied to the image of lower left corner of the painting by Qi Baishi «Monkey Contemplating Peach»

on the image — parameters of a light filter

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

Below you can see the result after applying a special light filter.
On the lower left corner of the painting by Qi Baishi «Monkey Contemplating Peach» were revealed watermarks in form of the name «齊白石» (Qi Baishi).

on the image below — lower left corner of the painting by Qi Baishi «Monkey Contemplating Peach»
-in the red rectangle — revealed watermarks in form of a name of Qi Baishi in traditional chinese characters «齊白石»

- in the red rectangle — sample of chinese characters «齊白石»

Исследование при помощи поляризационного микроскопа

 

Conclusion:

From the history it is a known fact that a watermarks were first introduced in Fabriano, Italy, in 1282. ( source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watermark ). So in the 20th century,the process of applying watermarks was widespread on postal stamps, banknotes, special letters as well as a paper for painters.

In this research were obtained important fact  - on the authentic painting by Qi Baishi «Monkey Contemplating Peach» was revealed watermarks in form of the name «齊白石» (Qi Baishi).

That watermarks are located on the whole surface of the painting, same way as on the subject work. That proves that the subject work is performed on the same special personal paper of Qi Baishi that was used in creation of a work «Monkey Contemplating Peach».

Specialist from a paper production company Thaipepermill co.,Ltd., Mr Charit, confirmed that research results, that the subject work is performed on a paper with watemarks in
form of a characters «齊白石»

 

The received facts prove that when creating the subject work, was used special prepared personal paper of Qi Baishi, which additionaly confirms the authenticity of the subject work.