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Tang


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Tang

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Refers to a Chinese dynasty of the period 618 to 907 CE, a time considered one of the most brilliant in Chinese history. China flourished as a stable, consolidated empire and the resulting prosperity and patronage created a Golden Age of Chinese painting, metalwork, ceramics, music, and poetry. Chang'an, with its masterful urban planning, remained the main Tang capital and a world center. Taizong (reigned 626-649) and Xuanzong (reigned 712-756) were important Tang rulers and patrons. Buddhism remained influential although it suffered periods of persecution during the Tang dynasty. Paintings from the caves at Dunhuang and stone pagodas such as the Great Wild Goose Pagoda (ca. 652) and the Small Wild Goose Pagoda (ca. 707) in Chang'an have survived. Monumental stone sculpture of the northern provinces displays the new tendency toward fuller, more sensual figures. This tendency also found in secular Tang sculpture, both stone and ceramic. The merging of Indian and Chinese sculpture styles is seen at the cave at Mt. Tianlong, created under the patronage of Empress Wu Zetian (reigned 690-705). Painting, which flourished during the Tang, was dominated by the secular landscape tradition. Li Sixum and Li Zhaodao, father and son, and Wang Wei are three painters' names known to us; probable copies of their work exist. Wang Wei's work, influential for later artists, was intimate and melancholy while the work of Li Sixum and Li Zhaodao features the bright greens and blues of many Tang landscapes. Chinese portrait painting, begun in the Han dynasty, was refined in the Tang by such artists as Wu Daozi. Tang ceramics include sancai earthenware figurines and vessels, typically used as tomb objects, white porcellanous wares such as the well-known Xing ware of Henan province, and the jadelike Yue celadons of Zhejiang province. The use of metal oxides in underglaze decoration was developed in Hunan and Sichuanh provinces and porcelain, although not fully exploited until later, has its origins in the Tang period. Tang decorative arts were influenced by Middle Eastern and other foreign trends during the Tang dynasty, leading to new styles in ceramics and metalwork. For instance, colorful glazed earthenware objects such as ewers and rhytons were made to resemble Persian silverwork and Persian weft patterning were introduced to Chinese textiles. China, in turn, exported its pottery, silk, and printing and paper technology. The Tang dynasty was succeeded by the Later Liang dynasty.

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China--History--T'ang dynasty

T'ang

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