Wang Xizhi the Great Calligrapher-Ending
Wang Xizhi had a garden called "Lan Ting," near Kuaiji Mountain (Shaoxing, Zhejiang Province). It was a garden of comfort, elegance and simple beauty. In 353 Wang Xizhi and his friends had a get-together in Lan Ting. It was a nice day, full of easy talk and refined intellectual pleasures. Each of them composed verses to celebrate this occasion, which they put together into the Lan Ting Collection. Everybody agreed that Wang Xizhi should be the one to write a prologue for their collection. As if the Muses had planted the ideas into his mind, Wang Xizhi penned the prologue, which proved to be a masterpiece of literature and calligraphy, treasured and admired to this day.
As literature and as calligraphy, the "Prologue" to the Lan Ting Collection speaks perfectly of the spirit of the time in which it was created. The artistry of the brush strokes shows not only the well trained touches of the author but also a sense of the emotional state of his being, which he invested in every stroke of his brush, and in the pattern in which all the strokes came together. It is a work of both scope and balance, so that the whole piece conveys felicity as well as a dynamic and beautiful rhythm. Ever since its creation, the "Prologue" has been valued as one of the greatest masterpieces of calligraphy. From it, Wang Xizhi acquired a timeless name.
* The Own Calligraphy
Wang Xizhi liked to travel around the famous mountains and rivers. Whenever he saw the scripts of famous calligraphers, he would carefully imitate such scripts. It is said that when he was 53 years old, he still kept the habit of imitating the styles of ancient calligraphers. Once he went to bed, he still drew characters in the air with his fingers. Unconsciously, he moved the fingers on his wife's body. His wife was sulky and said, "Why do you always draw characters on other's body? Where is your own?" When Wang heard "your own," he suddenly realized that he should create a calligraphy style of his own. Later, he finally formed his unique style by concentrating others' merits.