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Subject:Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: Tony Winn Thu, Sep 05, 2019 IP:

Dear all,
I have a set of Chinese hanging scroll paintings, and they all look-touch-smell old and authentic, to me (a person with very limited knowledge about Art) :)
Below are pictures of one of the paintings.
I have grown very fond of them and would love to learn more about their origin and history.
I really appreciate any help !!!

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: Tony Winn Fri, Sep 06, 2019

Here are the images :)

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: rat Sat, Sep 07, 2019

if you are fond of the paintings, why are you posting only images of forged signatures and fake seals? just show the paintings.

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: Tony Winn Sun, Sep 08, 2019

Dear friend,
Thank you very much for your time and comment :)
My heart sinks as I learned the truth you revealed ... The painting looks very old and real to me under magnifying glass, and I never thought that it is with faked seals and forged signatures (?!)
I have treasured the paintings and even thought to have them all appraised / authenticated in the near future ... :(
I will show some of them, but they might be faked and forged as well since the look similar in term of mounting and from the same estate :(

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: rat Tue, Sep 10, 2019

Sure, and sorry to be curt, it's just much more interesting to see artwork, especially when prefaced by how much you enjoy it, rather than a series of requests from various folks asking for free translation of the seals and inscriptions on their items.

This is actually an ok picture, but it was made within the past two or three decades to masquerade as a picture by the Yuan artist Zhang Wo 張渥, who is known for his figure paintings. This webpage shows a couple of his surviving works (pictures are not the best) and includes a landscape handscroll that has been split into two photos (
His supposed inscription and signature are in the upper right. On the left are two false signatures and inscriptions by Lu Ji, a Ming painter, and Shen Quan, a Qing painter. Not sure why those are there except to give the picture some bells and whistles. The seals appearing elsewhere on the picture are mostly facsimiles of seals belonging to the Qianlong emperor that often appear on works in the imperial collection.

In style your picture relates to Southern Sung painters Ma Yuan and his son Ma Lin, and to their later admirers, particularly those working in the Ming period. Here are a couple (not the best) of Ma Yuan pictures that relate a bit to yours:

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: Tony Winn Sun, Sep 08, 2019

Sorry, I did not answer your previous question. I don't read Chinese so I thought I could learn more about the artist and what it says by posting the writings and the seals.
As mentioned, I am a cancer researcher and I really don't now much about traditional Chinese paintings, except that they look very nice.
I examined the paintings and they were all looks old and with "real" ink brushes and stampings. I would never guess people would go that far to create faked paintings with all faked seals and forged signatures!!!
Thanks for letting me know :)

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: rat Tue, Sep 10, 2019

Hi Tony,
Yes, forgeries have been a problem for centuries in China, and assessing authenticity is unfortunately a critical skill for anyone who pursues this field avidly. Unfortunately because it's sometimes quite difficult to be definitive on the subject and experts will often differ. This is partly because painters learned by copying existing works, so there are tons of copies out there (to which signatures have often been added by the unscrupulous), and for some early works the only surviving thing we have today are copies from sometimes centuries later. Anyway, long story, but an interesting one if are into Sherlock Holmes.

This picture is like the other one, made within recent decades, reasonably good in traditional style (but seemingly without the artificial distressing of the other one), signed in the left by someone I can't make out from your photo but who no doubt is supposed to be quite well known, and then at the right with a fake "A Treasure!" inscription "signed" by Ming painter Wen Jia (so the artist whose name is signed on the left will predate Wen Jia). Not sure whose name is written at the bottom right either, but as this is a modern imitation of a traditional picture, it's not essential. A number of the many seals again are associated with the Qianlong emperor, who used to apply them to paintings and calligraphy in the imperial collection.

Here are four Ming pictures all pasted next to each other to look like one that show the general type of thing this painting is after.

Enjoy the paintings, I don't mean to discount the pleasure they bring in any way, but you should know that they aren't the imperial heirlooms they are otherwise pretending to be.

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: Tony Winn Tue, Sep 10, 2019

Thanks again RAT for your input!!!
I would love to have opinions from other experts in the forum! I. Nagy ,Bill...?
I also am looking to have the paintings (6's) examined / authenticated and greatly appreciate guidance on where to start! Any recommendation on a capable authenticator in the Los Angeles area or Southern California?
Many thanks :)

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: Tony Winn Wed, Sep 11, 2019

Due to the lapse in the time it took to post a message, I posted the last two comments before seeing Rat’s two last messages :)

Dear Rat,
It is just amazing how vast and deep your knowledge is about Chinese traditional painting. I really am impressed and very appreciative of your time and insightful analysis and feedback.
I love the paintings still and wish that they would bear no stamps and signatures at all ... well, it is what it is :)
Again, I really appreciate your precious time and thoughtfulness Rat!!!

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: rat Thu, Sep 12, 2019

My pleasure, and if it helps you are in good company wishing there weren't so many seals on pictures--the Qianlong emperor is well-known and not liked for stamping his seals all over things he liked as well as writing poetic inscriptions on them that take up a lot of the empty space the artist intended. Fortunately his connoisseurship was not the best, so in one instance he stamped and marked up a copy of a particularly prominent painting and spared the genuine version, which he thought was the copy.

The copy is here:
The original is here:

Subject:Re: Chinese hanging scroll painting
Posted By: John R Sun, Sep 15, 2019

Tony, I've been trying to "read" the forensics of your paintings. Some of the Qianlong seals appear to have been added to enhance the history of these paintings, but do not match exactly his recorded seals. It looks like they were added after the paper of the painting was cracked from rolling and unrolling. These seals fill in the paper damage but the original ink and seals don't. The earliest damage to the paper should affect the entire original image,but later additions should fill in some of this damage. Another interesting note is that the earliest seals are a deeper shade of red than the later seals. An effect that I have been researching for many years. Hello rat. | Associations | Articles | Exhibitions | Galleries |