Author Topic: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals  (Read 196322 times)

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Offline KeepOnTrying!

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #345 on: January 23, 2016, 12:45:53 AM »
Thanks for the finding. Geyuan is not in the Summer Palace. The two gardens are not even in the same place. The Summer Palace is in Beijing, while Geyuan is in Yangzhou, more than 1000 kilometers to the south. Apparently the designer picked the plate and liked the design, and used it on the Geyuan medal. This was a project by Shanghai Mint, not sponsored by the team, and therefore the design was not scrutinized. It is a wrong medal, in that sense. The artist who designed the plate is still alive, and there may be copy right issues. We will see.

Interesting turn of events! The plate#5 painting was described as the "Garden of Harmonious Pleasures" in the listing. I found that confusing initially as that is another name for "Xiequyuan". Now it makes sense.
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Offline Rainbird

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #346 on: January 23, 2016, 09:01:47 AM »
This is like de-ja-vu all over again! I did a double take when my browser picked this up on eBay. It is part of an Imperial Jingdezhen porcelain eight-plate series depicting “Scenes from the Summer Palace”. This was designed by Zhang Song Mao and the plate produced in 1989.  This particular plate is #5 in the series. Looks similar to the scene depicted on one side of the 2015 Geyuan Classical Garden Medal. Did the medal and porcelain plate designers use the same source material for their design or was the medal designed from the plate’s artwork? I am not aware that the Geyuan Garden is part of the Summer Palace. Clarification needed. The colors on the plate design provide more vibrancy to what is depicted on the medal. Looks good! Attached photos provide side-by-side comparisons.

I used to own the plate (and the whole set). :) I sold them coz the plates are not hand-painted.  I believe that the medal is designed from Songmao Zhangs's orignal artwork.

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #347 on: January 23, 2016, 09:09:51 AM »
I used to own the plate (and the whole set). :) I sold them coz the plates are not hand-painted.  I believe that the medal is designed from Songmao Zhangs's orignal artwork.

Please can you confirm whether the scene depicted on plate#5 as referred to above is from the Summer Palace Garden or from the Geyuan Garden. Thanks.
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Offline Rainbird

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #348 on: January 23, 2016, 09:31:41 AM »
Please can you confirm whether the scene depicted on plate#5 as referred to above is from the Summer Palace Garden or from the Geyuan Garden. Thanks.

From Summer Palace, not from Geyuan Garden.

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #349 on: January 23, 2016, 10:13:03 AM »
From Summer Palace, not from Geyuan Garden.

Thanks for clarification. I "stumbled" upon this discovery by chance but now that we are here the question has to be asked. What does this mean for the 2015 Geyuan Medal? Withdrawal/Recall by the Mint? Recharacterization? Renaming (2015 Xiequyuan Geyuan Medal, for example). Continue as "usual"? Has this happened before? What are the precedents? Where do we go from here?
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Offline Rainbird

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #350 on: January 23, 2016, 10:49:51 AM »
Thanks for clarification. I "stumbled" upon this discovery by chance but now that we are here the question has to be asked. What does this mean for the 2015 Geyuan Medal? Withdrawal/Recall by the Mint? Recharacterization? Renaming (2015 Xiequyuan Geyuan Medal, for example). Continue as "usual"? Has this happened before? What are the precedents? Where do we go from here?

Some people actually call the Geyuan medal as Xiequyuan. Yes, you are right, the Shanghai mint made a mistake by using the scene of Xiequyuan on the obverse of the Geyuan medal (or in other way, they mis-describe the Xiequyuan as Geyuan in the certificate). It's a shame but what you can do is to buy as much as you could. One day the price would soar for the "error" medal, who knows? :)

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #351 on: January 23, 2016, 11:11:58 AM »
Some people actually call the Geyuan medal as Xiequyuan. Yes, you are right, the Shanghai mint made a mistake by using the scene of Xiequyuan on the obverse of the Geyuan medal (or in other way, they mis-describe the Xiequyuan as Geyuan in the certificate). It's a shame but what you can do is to buy as much as you could. One day the price would soar for the "error" medal, who knows? :)

Interesting indeed!
+1 for important observations and insight.
Thanks.
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Offline KeepOnTrying!

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #352 on: January 25, 2016, 10:22:56 AM »
Points of Difference Between The Xiequyuan Painting and the Geyuan Medal Interpretation

It is interesting to note differences in the representation of Zhang Song Mao’s design of the Xiequyuan on the obverse of the Geyuan medal. The more obvious changes include the areas marked on the medal with the following numbers:

1: This is a less relaxed pose compared to the painting. The individuals are standing straight in a more formal posture. They appear as if conversing in the painting.
2: There are four ducks floating on the lake (in the Geyuan medal) compared to five birds flying past, on the painting.
3: The fishing rod is bent more indicating some tension on the line maybe as a result of catching a fish!
4: This is a more active pose; the individual is leaning more towards the left as if taking a step forward.
5: Again, this fishing rod is bent more towards the lake rather than being ramrod straight as in the painting.
6: The lettering is different. I wonder what is written. Can anyone interpret this? Thanks.
7: Are these two individuals children or servants?
8: Are the shutters open here compared to the painting?
9: The doorway has a different configuration.
10: The sky is not hazy!
11: The bench is not clearly shown.
12: There is a less linear reflection of the building on the water surface. This is appreciated better at a higher magnification.

All the same, quite a lot of detail was captured on the medal.

Note: My interest here is more academic than salacious. It is neither critique nor criticism. I have found a treasure throve in the numismatics of MCC that keeps the mind ticking along nicely and I am grateful for that. Definitely a great hobby!
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Offline fwang2450

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #353 on: January 25, 2016, 04:38:28 PM »
6 on the medal means Chinese Classical Gardens. This is the wording that occurs on all the Classical Garden medals.

Despite the differences you pointed out, I believe the designer did a pretty good job in transforming a 2D painting into a 3D image.

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #354 on: January 25, 2016, 07:00:42 PM »
6 on the medal means Chinese Classical Gardens. This is the wording that occurs on all the Classical Garden medals.

Despite the differences you pointed out, I believe the designer did a pretty good job in transforming a 2D painting into a 3D image.

Thanks for providing the meaning of the Chinese lettering. Those will be the first letters I shall learn!

Just to reiterate, as I already commented in my post, there was absolutely nothing critical or negative in my observations. I just looked at the painting again and started seeing the differences I highlighted. I found them interesting and illustrative of how the artist wanted to interpret the original drawings. A carbon copy would not have been laudatory of the artist's skills. So it is actually a good thing. My comments had nothing to do with the quality of the work on the medal which, IMO and FWIW, is in keeping with the quality and ingenuity seen in other medals of the series.
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Offline NBM

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #355 on: January 26, 2016, 05:25:36 AM »
Quote
After serious considerations, the leader of the Design and Engraving Group of Shanghai Mint, Xie Xingrui, was entrusted with the design job...
Xie Xingrui has some splaining to do.  :lol:

Offline fwang2450

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #356 on: January 26, 2016, 08:07:49 PM »
Xie Xingrui has some splaining to do.  :lol:
It turned out that he was not exactly responsible. Someone else provided the picture without double checking.

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #357 on: January 26, 2016, 09:15:06 PM »
It turned out that he was not exactly responsible. Someone else provided the picture without double checking.

Not acceptable. I am not in the business of laying blame. But the "buck" has to stop where it needs to stop. A Team Leader bears the ultimate responsibility for maintaining the integrity of products (in this case). Even if others suggest themes and present artwork for use in crafting medals he is the one who has to investigate the work, determine its artistic merit and check out critically important issues such as copyrights. Furthermore, an experienced artist who has dealt with or is aware of the Chinese Classical Garden themes should have been able to recognize a painting of the Xiequyuan. I am still interested more in the translation of a painting into a coin or medal and not necessarily the "mistake" that happened. Surely, this cannot be the first time any Mint has made mistakes in coin or medal production so this doesn't have to be blown out of proportion. But the buck stops at his feet in this instance!
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Offline NBM

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #358 on: January 26, 2016, 10:00:23 PM »
It turned out that he was not exactly responsible. Someone else provided the picture without double checking.

Mistakes happen, as was pointed out earlier this is part of the charm and fun of collecting MCC.

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Re: The Journey of the Chinese Classical Garden Series of Medals
« Reply #359 on: January 26, 2016, 11:09:27 PM »
I took a higher magnification photo of the lower left side of the plate to clarify who the two individuals I noted in a previous post were. They look like adults; a man and a woman. I believe they are servants each bearing a tray of, most likely, food and refreshments. See attached photo.
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