Chen Xianzhang (1428--1500), courtesy name Gongfu and alias Shizhai, was a native of Xinhui, Guangdong. He later moved to Baisha Village in Jiangmen, and many people today call him Chen Baisha. He first studied under Wu Yubi. He advocated "learning to know doubts" and "independent thinking", and advocated a relatively free and open style of study, gradually forming a school with its own characteristics, known as the Jiangmen School in history. His works were later compiled into "The Complete Works of Bai Shasha".   

Chen Xianzhang is the most famous Neo-Confucian scholar and poet in Lingnan. He is also a calligrapher who is original and daring to create. His calligraphy is the most distinctive and famous in Lingnan calligraphy circles. He was good at Shu Mao's ghostwriting, and dedicated it to writing in his later years, becoming his own family. Mai Huasan's "Lingnan Calligraphy Collection" said, "Mr. Baisha used Maolong's pen to write vigorous characters, used astringent to treat sweetness and ripeness, and used dryness to treat weakness. The world's ears and eyes were new." "It is because of Baisha "Shocked the Central Plains", "How can I say that I am not as good as the Han Dynasty"? The so-called Maolong pen is actually Chen's self-made thatch pen. The pen tip can be long or short, strong and powerful, and is suitable for writing large characters. This can also be said to be a great invention of Chen. Most of Chen Xianzhang's calligraphy works that have been handed down from generation to generation were written with thatch pens, and are regarded as rare treasures by connoisseurs. When summarizing his experience in calligraphy, he said: "Every time I write a book, I am still in motion. I put it down without letting go, and stay without keeping it. This is why I move so wonderfully. When I achieve my ambition, I don't get surprised, and when I encounter misfortune, I don't worry about it. This is why I keep it safe." It's almost quiet. The method is not restrained, unbridled but not flowing, clumsy but more skillful, hard but capable of softness. The shape is upright but the momentum is rushing, the intention is full and strange overflows." The movement, retention, hardness and softness of the brushwork are combined With his unique trend and novel layout, he gave calligraphy theory profound connotation with a Neo-Confucian's unique way of thinking.


Self-written poem volume (part) collected by Shanghai Museum

Chen Xianzhang is a calligrapher who is unique and dares to create. The calligraphy in "Zi Shu Shi Scroll" is ancient, clumsy, bookish, and unique. It is a masterpiece in his later years.