Chapter – 4

Landscape of the Soul

In this post, we have given the Important Questions of the chapter 4 “Landscape of the Soul”. It is the 4th chapter of the prose of Class 11th English.

Short Answers Type Questions

Q.1. What wonderful tale is told about the Chinese painter Wu Daozi?

Ans. The Chinese painter Wu Daozi was engaged by the Emperor to decorate his palace walls with landscape paintings. It was painter’s last painting. He hid his work behind a screen which only the emperor could see and admire it. But the painter got into a cave. The gate closed before the king could enter it. All the painting also disappeared along with their maker.

Q.2. What does Chinese story about Emperor and Wu Daozi illustrate?

Ans. The story deals with the magic of art and skill of the artist. He created wonderful landscapes on the palace walls. The emperor admired only the outer looks of the work. It also conveys that the emperor could only rule over his territory, and not understand the spirit of art. Only the artist known the way within. He alone can enter the spirit of the universe.

Q.3. Explain the terms “illusionistic likeness”, ‘figurative painting’ and ‘delicate realism’.

Ans. The word illusionistic means creating a sort of false expression. European art tries to create illusion of actual view. ‘Figurative’ also has something to do with figure or actual shape of a thing. The word ‘delicate’ means fine. Art reproduces not exact view of reality, but only a resemblance of it.

Q.4. What is the unique feature of horizontal scroll? How can it be appreciated?

Ans. The unique feature of Chinese horizontal scroll is that it does not give us an integrated view of scene. There is gap between one picture and another. It leaves scope for the viewer to use his mind and imagination. The landscape is not realistic but an inner one.

Q.5. Which story from Flanders, Europe, is most representative of Western painting?

Ans. The story is about a famous painter who would not draw the eyes of a dragon he had painted. He had a fear that with eyes, the dragon would fly out of painting.

Q.6. What is Shanshui? How does it express the concept of word ‘landscape’?

Ans. Shanshui is a concept about the mystery and origin of the universe. The landscape literally means ‘mountain water’. There two elements are like two poles, the source of energy. The mountain is vertical and male, the water is horizontal and female. There are also called yan and yin. They are complementary. Their interaction keeps the world going.

Q.7. What is the third element, represented by the ‘Middle Void’ in Chinese landscape?

Ans. The masculine energy of Yang and female energy of Yin are in complete without each other. But their interaction takes place in the ‘Middle Void’, or blank space left in a Chinese landscape nothing can happen without the combination of both aspects of energy.

Long Answers Type Questions

Q.1. How does the author contrast the Chinese View of Art with the Western concept of painting? Which one do you find easy to understand and admire.

Ans. A Chinese landscape does n’t stick to reality. It leaves enough scope for the viewer to use imagination. The painting can be looked from any angle and any view point. The scroll on which the artist paints has white, blank spaces left over. It gives freedom to the viewer to travel up and down. It captures the essence of inner life. A European or Western painting, on the other hand, is realistic. The painter wants us to look at it as he had seen it. From a particular angle it creates an illusion of delicate realism. The story of quinten, in 15th century, illustrates the point clearly. He entered a painter’s studio and painted a fly on artist’s blank convenes. The artist mistook it for a real fly and tried to drive it away. That story is representative of Western painting.

Q.2. What is Nek Chand’s unique achievement and gift to the world? How did he get international recognition?

Ans. The India born and altogether untrained artist Nek Chand developed concept of ‘outsider art’. He created a Paradise using waste material at Chandigarh. He cut the rocky place and created his dream. This drew attention of the world. His art is of an untrained visionary. Because such artists have received no formal training, but sometimes such artists show remarkable talent and insight. Nek Chand’s creation is known as the ‘Rock Garden’. The Swiss Commission organized a European exhibition in 2005 on Nek Chand’s works of art. It was shown in various other European countries. Thus, he got international recognition.


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