外师造化,中得心源 – Chinese philosophy and culture

wài shī zàohuà, zhōng dé xīnyuán 外师造化,中得心源

Draw Artistic Inspiration from Both Within and Without

艺术创作向外得自师法自然万物,向内得自心中的悟性。“造化”即大自然;“心源”为佛教语,意指内心的妙悟为一切法的根源。是唐张彦远在《历代名画记》中所记载的唐代画家张璪(zǎo)的话。原意指创作山水松石类画作,应当以大自然为师,观察山水景物真实的纹理、形状、色彩等,用心领悟山水景物之美,进而在画作中提炼呈现,使画作既逼真又超脱,以达到传神境界。“造化”与“心源”是相通融合而非彼此对立的关系。唐代诗论中对“心”与“心源”也有应用,文论家们对于写诗过程的描述,与张璪所言绘画过程并无区别。中国古典诗文创作提炼物象、熔铸意象,重视作品的韵致之美,与画论具有共通性。

According to this precept, in pursuing artistic creation, one needs to draw inspiration from all things in nature and his innermost thoughts. Zaohua (造化) means nature. Xinyuan (心源) is a Buddhist term, meaning that the true awakening of one’s mind is the root of all Buddhist teaching. This view, originally described by the Tang Dynasty painter Zhang Zao, was quoted later by the Tang Dynasty author Zhang Yanyuan in his Famous Paintings Through History. It originally was a principle governing the painting of landscapes. It aimed to achieve both verisimilitude and ephemeralness and convey the subtle nuances of mountains, rivers, lakes, trees, and rocks in real life by carefully observing their true grains, shapes, and colors. The painter was encouraged to experience their beauty with his heart and capture it in a painting. “Nature” and “inspiration from within” are complementary rather than confrontational – they have a relationship of unity rather than opposition. Tang Dynasty essays about poetry, too, referred to the “soul” and “inspiration from within.” Descriptions of poetry writing were not very different from Zhang Zao’s interpretation of the process of painting. Classical Chinese prose and poetry are similar to painting in that they stress the importance of molding different physical images into an aesthetic whole. They value the charm of a literary work, fusing outer nature and inner thought.

引例 Citations:

◎初,毕庶子宏擅名于代,一见惊叹之,异其唯用秃毫,或以手摸绢素,因问璪所受。璪曰:“外师造化,中得心源。”(张彦远《历代名画记》卷十)

(起初,左庶子毕宏在当时很有名气,见到张璪忍不住惊叹,奇怪于他仅仅用秃毫笔作画,有时还用手摸作画用的绢素,因此询问张璪从哪里学习的。张璪说:“向外得自师法自然万物,向内得自心中的悟性。”)

Bi Hong, an official who oversaw the management of the crown prince’s residence, was well-known. He marveled at Zhang Zao’s ability to paint with an almost worn-out brush. When he saw Zhang Zao touched from time to time the undyed silk Zhang was painting on, he asked Zhang how he had learned this skill. Zhang said, “I have learned it all from both nature and within.” (Zhang Yanyuan: Famous Paintings Through History)

◎心源为炉,笔端为炭。锻炼元本,雕砻群形。纠纷舛错,逐意奔走。(刘禹锡《董氏武陵集纪》)

(内心的悟性就像是熔炉,笔端就像是炭火。用熔炉提炼出万物的根本,用笔端雕琢刻画出具体的物象。错杂纷乱的词句和描写,随着作者的思绪恣意奔驰。)

Inspiration from within is like a furnace, and the tip of a writing brush is like a burning charcoal fire. An artist extracts the essence of all things from the furnace and carves out concrete objects with his brush. His thoughts and feelings pour out a free flow of multitude of vivid expressions. (Liu Yuxi: A Preface to Dong’s Notes from Wuling)

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