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Visual & Performing Arts
English (U.S.)
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Chinese Calligraphy: Zhang Daqian Artistic Influence (Essay Sample)


Mid-Term Paper Instructions

You should write a midterm paper of a minimum of 1250 words, approximately 4-5 pages (not counting the bibliography or references).

The due date is April 7, Tuesday, 11: 55 pm. You are required to submit your midterm paper to the Sakai assignment tab. Later papers are also not going to be accepted or graded. Your paper has to go through Turnitin. Without Turnitin originality report, your paper will not be graded. Therefore, email submission is prohibited..

As a student of Rutgers, you are expected to review and follow the University Policy on Academic Integrity for Undergraduate and Graduate Students. Any violation of academic integrity, such as plagiarism or asking someone to write the paper for you, will be reported to the Office of Student Conduct WITHOUT EXCEPTION. All Rutgers students should familiarize themselves with the academic integrity policy stipulated by Rutgers: http://academicintegrity(dot)rutgers(dot)edu/
You are encouraged to choose a topic that interests you. In the first part of your essay—for example, the first three paragraphs—you can sketch out the biographical background, or give an introduction to the persons or subjects you are writing about. In the second part of your essay, I am looking for your critical analyses, explaining why this subject/ painter/calligrapher interests you.
Possibly great papers topics are:
The mutual influences of traditional Chinese painting or calligraphy and modern Western art.
Some legendary figures in the history of Chinese art: for example, Zhang Daqian, Wang Xi-zhi, Zhao Wuji.
The way in which Chinese painting and calligraphic writing are infused with spiritual significance, and how Daoism, Buddhism, and Zen have transformed the meaning of Chinese paintings and calligraphy.

This paper will not be graded with a strict standard of expository writing. However, make sure to proofread before you hand in the paper.

This paper is not a seminar research project. However, students have to list two items of references IN ENGLISH (not in any other languages than English). At the website of Rutgers library, you can click on the on-line database. There are several useful databases that can help you to find critical articles or reviews on certain artists or works. Art Index Retrospective (H.W. Wilson) is one of them. https://www(dot)libraries(dot)rutgers(dot)edu/indexes/art_index_retro You can utilize the resources provided by Rutgers library.


Chinese Calligraphy: Zhang Daqian Artistic Influence
Institutional Affiliation
Chinese Calligraphy: Zhang Daqian Artistic Influence
Zhang Daqian (1899 – 1983), also known as Chang Dai-Chien, is one of the world’s best-recognized artists from the Far East. He was born to a family in the Sichuan province in the tail-end years of the final dynasty in China’s history, the Qing. Zhang’s family was artistically inclined, leading to him being taught to paint by his mother and siblings from a young age. He naturally began by attempting to copy the pieces he could find lying around, like the individualistic masterpieces like Bada Shanren (Yinxing Liu, 2015). This paper seeks to identify the underlying influence of what came to be synonymous with the name Zhang Daqian through a critical chronological discussion of significant events in his life that determined his development into an accomplished visual artist. Similarly, this paper seeks to discuss my interest in the prolific artist, paying particular attention to his background and how he developed his style.
I chose Zhang Daqian as the topic of my essay because of his unique artistic journey that propelled him from a child born into an art-enthusiast family into an accomplished master who perfected and produced his technique after many year. This is because, while his life journey is long and illustrious, it goes to show that persistence and hard work in one’s craft can pay off.

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