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Mountains and Rivers Without End 
(and without mountains and rivers)


Whenever Wang Mo wanted to paint a picture, he would first drink wine, and when he was sufficiently drunk, he would spatter the ink onto the painting surface. Then, laughing and singing all the while, he would stamp on it with his feet and smear it with his hands, besides swashing and sweeping it with the brush. The ink would be thin in some places, rich in others; he would follow the shapes which and ink had produced, making these into mountains, rocks, clouds or water. 

 -Zhu Jingxuan (active 8th century)

translation after James Cahill

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