The beauty and grace of the orchids, which belong to the category of bird-and-flower painting in Chinese art, are fragile in form, with no violent tendencies. They are highly valued for their delicate fragrance and always associated with elefgance.
The most Chinese Orchid Paintings are specially associated with women, love, and beauty; and secondly, with virtue, moral excellence, and the "refinement of the superior man (a learned and cultured gentleman), whose reputation precedes him like perfume."
Zheng Sixiao, who was famous for his refusal to collaborate with the Yuan court, which overthrew the Song Dynasty. He specialized in ink paintings of the orchid and the bamboo. This painting Ink Orchid depicts an orchid in light ink, with its leaves evenly distributed on two sides. Although lacking in the varied poses characterizing works by later painters of orchids, it is a neat composition with every brushstroke making an impact. It also successfully adapted calligraphic brush techniques to painting. This is a representative orchid painting of the artist in his late years.