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Artist finds a world of inspiration in lakes

By Ji Xiang (China Daily)

09:42, August 28, 2012

While Swiss lakes have provided a lifetime of inspiration, painter Daniel Aeberli says other views, such as the lake at the Summer Palace, have deeply touched him. (Provided to China Daily)

Anyone with even a passing interest in Chinese art knows that apart from the fabled Four Gentlemen - orchids, bamboo, the chrysanthemum and the plum blossom - there are at least two other staples in Chinese paintings: mountains and water.

But while those two characteristics are distinct to the shanshui art form, Chinese artists clearly do not have a monopoly on the mountains and water embodied in its name.

Living in a country with plenty of mountains and lakes, Swiss artist Daniel Aeberli has created works that have a touch of shanshui.

The body of water that has been particularly inspirational for him is Lake Neuchatel, at the southern foot of the Jura mountains.

Blaise Godet, the ambassador of Switzerland to China and the patron of an exhibition of Aeberli's art in Beijing, is a keen admirer.

"His art is outwardly oriented, integrating aesthetics of often bluish landscapes, the sky or the water, as well as introspective in the sense that it fixes essential impressions and smooth lines emerging from a genuine spiritual quest on the canvas."

But Aeberli's horizons extend beyond his country's borders. Some of his works take in the rolling hills of Tuscany and the expansive waters of Venice.

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