Ren Bonian

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Ren Yi (Chinese: 任頤; 1840–1896), also known as Ren Bonian, was a painter and son of a rice merchant who supplemented his income by doing portraits. He was born in Zhejiang, but after the death of his father in 1855 he lived in Shanghai; this move placed him in a more urban world that was exposed to Western thinking. In Shanghai he became a member of the Shanghai School which fused popular and traditional styles. Ren Bonian ranked with Ren Xiong, Ren Xun and Ren Yu as the "Four Rens."[1]

He was noted for his bold brushstrokes and use of color. In his earlier career the Song Dynasty painters influenced him, but later on he favored a freer style influenced by the works of Zhu Da.



  • Chinese Paintings in the Ashmolean Museum Oxford (132) Oxford ISBN 1-85444-132-9


  1. ^ "Ten Magnificent Landscapes". The Palace Museum.

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