Han Xizai Gives A Night Banquet


"Han Xizai Gives A Night Banquet" is a scroll drawn by Gu Hongzhong, a painter in the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period (907-960). It is now housed in the Palace Museum in Beijing.

The main character Han Xizai in the Chinese painting was a high official in Southern Tang, but later attracted suspicion from the Emperor Li Yu. To protect himself, Han pretended to withdraw from politics and become addicted to a befuddled life full of entertainment. Li sent Gu from the Imperial Academy to record Han's private life, leading Gu to produce this famous artwork.

This painting, depicting scenes of Han's banquet, narrates through five distinct sections: Han Xizai listens to the pipa (a Chinese instrument) with his guests; Han beats a drum for the dancers; Han takes a rest during the break; Han listens to the wind music; and the guests talk with the singers. There are more than 40 characters in the paintings, all of the lifelike figures with different expressions and postures. The painting was Gu's most well-known work, as well as one of the most outstanding artwork from the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period.

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