Five-character couplet in cursive script "Collecting herbs and encountering three islands, seeking truth and encountering nine immortals"
His original name was Tong, also known as Zhu Da, and his nicknames include Bada Shanren, Xuege, Geshan, Geshanlu, Renwu, Liangyue, Daolang, etc. A native of Nanchang, Jiangxi Province, he is a descendant of Zhu Quan, king of Jiangning Xian, a royal family of the Ming Dynasty. He is the ninth generation grandson. After the fall of the Ming Dynasty, his country was destroyed and his family was destroyed. He felt sad and angry, so he pretended to be dumb and stupid. He put a big word "Mute" on the door and refused to speak to anyone. At the age of 23, he became a monk by cutting off his hair and took the name of Dharma. Due to long-term worries and depression, he suffered from the disease of madness and had many eccentricities. He was a famous painter in the Qing Dynasty and one of the "Four Monks" in the early Qing Dynasty. Bada Shanren was one of his names.
Zhu Da was a famous calligrapher and painter in the Qing Dynasty. His simple freehand flower and bird paintings created a new trend with his unique look. His calligraphy is also similar to his painting style, which is extremely concise. In his later years, he preferred to use a bare pen, which changed from sharp brushwork to a round and simple style.
Modern people have studied the eight major calligraphies, and there are different opinions on their origins. Or they could be called the Second King of Zong, Zong Dong Qichang, Zong Wang Chong, etc. It is like searching for his calligraphy and painting master, and there is still no definite conclusion. According to Mr. Wang Fangyu's research, Bada Shanren was deeply influenced by Ouyang Xun at first. Later, they learned Dong Qichang's calligraphy, and then turned to Huang Tingjian's exaggerated and open calligraphy. They explored in many ways, and then pursued the temperament of Wei and Jin people's calligraphy, and finally used seal script. It has formed its own unique style: rounded in the center, graceful and rich, and full of popularity. The achievements of his calligraphy are mainly the changes in brushwork.
Bada Shanren's inscriptions on many paintings are quite wonderful and ingenious. If any deficiencies are found in the layout of the painting, sometimes calligraphy and writing are used to make up for it. Bada Shanren can also write poems, so even if he doesn't paint many paintings, the artistic conception is enough if he inscribes poems that he writes at his own whim.