National Palace Museum of Korea

National Palace Museum

EXHIBITIONS& COLLECTIONS

50 Highlights

Six-Fold Screen of the Sun, Moon and Five Peaks 이미지

Six-Fold Screen of the Sun, Moon and Five Peaks

Artifact No.
Changdeok6416
Period
Material
Color on silk
Dimensions
Six-fold screen | 150.5 × 55.3cm
  • changduck6416.jpg

Substance

As symbols of royal authority screens depicting the theme of the sun, moon and five peaks were placed behind the throne of the king, near the king’s portraits, or even at any place that kings visited briefly. They were widely used at court ceremonies, for instance, as a backdrop of the queen or the crown prince during court celebrations or banquets or at the state funeral of the king or the queen.


The screen presents a panoramic view of natural elements, such as mountain peaks, the sun, the moon, streams, pine trees, etc., which represent the virtues of kings in the poem ‘Tianbao’ (天保) in Minor Odes of the Kingdom (Shaoya, 小雅), Book of Odes (Shijing, 詩經). By depicting the subjects of eternity with flamboyant contrast of colors and shades, the painting presented the divine authority and perpetuity of the regime through a direct and clear image. In addition to representing dignity and sacredness, the panoramic symmetry of the composition adds a sense of stability and orderliness typical of a court painting.


The contents of the poem ‘Tianbao(天保)’ in Minor Odes of the Kingdom (Shaoya, 小雅), Book of Odes (Shijing, 詩經) presents well the meanings behind the image of the sun, moon and five peaks.