Brush of the Gods

Brush of the Gods

Book - 2013
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Who wants to learn calligraphy when your brush is meant for so much more? Wu Daozi (689-758), known as China's greatest painter and alive during the T'ang Dynasty, is the subject of this stunning picture book. When an old monk attempts to teach young Daozi about the ancient art of calligraphy, his brush doesn't want to cooperate. Instead of characters, Daozi's brush drips dancing peonies and flying Buddhas! Soon others are admiring his unbelievable creations on walls around the city, and one day his art comes to life! Little has been written about Daozi, but Look and So masterfully introduce the artist to children.
Publisher: New York : Schwartz & Wade Books, c2013
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780375870019
Branch Call Number: jff LOO NVD
Characteristics: 1 v. (unpaged) : ill., color ; 29 cm
Additional Contributors: So, Meilo

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skyekilaen
May 15, 2016

Gorgeous book about artist Wu Daozi, one of the greatest painters in Chinese history. It’s rare that a biographical children’s picture book successfully captures my interest as a story, beyond its value as a learning opportunity, but Look and So grabbed me completely. I can’t wait to share this one with my son. The combination of art and magic is going to be right up his alley.

[Edited to add: he loved it.]

forbesrachel Sep 07, 2013

The Brush of the Gods is based on an old legend of the painter Wu Daozi. It starts with him in his childhood, and how he learns to first paint (even the greatest artisans of our race had to begin at the beginning after all). Gradually he becomes so good that his creatures actually come to life. The children, who are more open minded know that this is true, and as they grow it passes onto their children. Finally the emperor commissions him to do a masterpiece, one that would take up most his life to complete, and he does so. He creates a portrait of paradise, and it is said that that is where he know resides.
Two distinct illustration styles are used, the characters are painted, while the majority of Daozi's works are done in black, calligraphy-inspired lines. As these pieces take life, they too enter the painted world.
Daozi had a talent, and it is one that was so inspiring, that he is still remembered today.

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