Cold Meal Scroll

Cold Meal Scroll

Su Shih’s most acclaimed “Cold Meal Scroll”, ranks third as the semi cursive or running calligraphy in Chinese history. (Regular and cursive scripts are the two main styles of Chinese calligraphy, the semi cursive script is in between those two styles).

Size, thickness and distance between characters and lines are varied; sometimes reserved, other times bold. Characters that particularly stand out include those where their last vertical stroke trails down for some distance to stand out against the blank paper.

His most renowned student wrote a commentary on his Cold Meal Scroll (see below), the largest and beautiful calligraphy following the two cold meal poems). He called Su’s style as stone compressed toad, stout and fat.

Su’s calligraphy is not about beauty but character. It reflects his authenticity and natural style of freely expressing his emotions and thoughts as an impromptu art whether it is calligraphy and bimg08Enlargement

The scroll with commentaries is now housed in National Palace Museum right here in Taipei after changing hands from emperor Chien Lung in Ching Dynasty or merchants and scholars of China and Japan in the past thousand years.Visit National Palace Museum for a complete view of the scroll (see sample image above) and more description on Su Shih and his calligraphy.

If interested, see Variety’s film review and more details on “The Passage” (English, Japanese or Chinese edition), a Golden Horse award winning Taiwanese melodrama set in National Palace Museum with Su Shih’s Cold Meal Scroll connecting the lovelorn and disenfranchised.The film was shortlisted for Tokyo Film Festival competition and many others


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