错彩镂金 – Chinese philosophy and culture

cuòcǎi-lòujīn 错彩镂金

Gilded and Colored, Elegant and Refined

涂饰彩色,雕镂金银。形容艺术作品雕饰华美。用于文学作品,主要指诗歌辞藻华丽,讲究技巧。在审美境界上,“错彩镂金”不如“芙蓉出水”高妙:“错彩镂金”注重外在形态,处于审美表象阶段;而“芙蓉出水”超越表象,直达本体,是审美意趣的自然呈现。

The term is used to describe an excessively exquisite artistic work as if it were an object painted in bright colors and inlaid with gold and silver. In the literary context, it refers to poems written in a highly rhetorical style. Aesthetically, what is “gilded and colored, elegant and refined” is considered undesirable, and the style of “lotus rising out of water” is preferred. The former focuses only on external form and appearance, whereas the latter, as a natural presentation of aesthetic ideas, penetrates appearances and brings out the essence.

引例 Citations:

◎延之尝问鲍照己与灵运优劣,照曰:“谢五言如初发芙蓉,自然可爱;君诗若铺锦列绣,亦雕缋(huì)满眼。”(《南史·颜延之传》)

(颜延之曾经询问鲍照,自己的作品和谢灵运的作品相比哪个更好,鲍照说:“谢灵运的五言诗像刚出水的荷花,自然可爱;您的诗像铺开的锦绣,满眼都是雕饰彩绘。”)

Yan Yanzhi asked Bao Zhao, “Whose works are better, mine or Xie Lingyun’s?” Bao said, “Xie’s five-word-to-a-line poems are as natural and lovely as lotus having just risen out of water in bloom, while yours are like embroidery embellished with colored decorations.” (The History of the Southern Dynasties)

◎丹漆不文,白玉不雕,宝珠不饰,何也?质有余也,不受饰也。(刘向《说苑·反质》)

(红色的漆不需要花纹,纯白的玉不需要雕琢,珍贵的明珠不用装饰,为什么呢?因为它们本身已非常完美,无需再装饰。)

Red lacquer needs no decorated patterns, white jade needs no carving, and precious pearls need no adornment. Why? Because they are too good to be worked on. (Liu Xiang: Garden of Stories)

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