Angelina Li

How We See Nature: Singular Mastery Versus Shared Curiosity

Class of: 2025

Major: Communication Design BFA

Medium: Paper

Faculty: Margaret Samu

Prompt: For this paper, we analyzed the differences between two historical paintings through a comparison of formal elements such as line, composition, and space.

In this paper, I wrote about the Song dynasty scroll painting, “Li Bai gazing at the waterfall on Mount Lu” by Zhong Li and the German Romantic painting, “Two Men Contemplating the Moon” by Caspar David Friedrich. Though the pieces are superficially very similar, I found that looking at the artists’ use of composition, space, line, movement, and color helped me see the differences between the two pieces. I explore this in my thesis: ” “Li Bai gazing at the waterfall on Mount Lu” shows an isolated appreciation of a poet’s natural surroundings, whereas “Two Men Contemplating the Moon” shows a shared curiosity between two friends of an inconceivable natural phenomenon.” (my thesis statement).

Excerpt of paper: