Skip to Content
Closed today, next open Thursday. Closed today, next open Thursday.

Dream Journey to Rivers and Mountains

A work made of handscroll; ink and soft colors on paper.

Image actions

  • A work made of handscroll; ink and soft colors on paper.


Qing dynasty (1644–1912); c. 1655


Cheng Zhengkui (attributed)
Chinese, 1604-76

About this artwork

In 1649, the former Ming dynasty official Cheng Zhengkui emerged from retirement in south China to serve the new Manchu Qing court in Beijing. Thereafter, he resolved to paint and present as gifts to his fellow officials an ambitious series of more than one hundred scrolls under the title Dream Journey Among Rivers and Mountains. “Dream Journey,” literally “to travel while reclining,” suggests a tour that is purely visionary. This work is likely one of nearly forty scrolls that reportedly survive from the series. Although painted in Beijing, Cheng’s imagery clearly depicts the low-lying hills, valleys, rivers, and waterfalls distinctive to south China, where intellectuals were relatively isolated from the new, alien regime. His tranquil style integrates subtle elements of earlier masters.


Currently Off View


Arts of Asia


Cheng Zhengkui


Dream Journey to Rivers and Mountains


China (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Handscroll; ink and soft colors on paper


Dated:1646 colophon


19.7 × 282 cm (7 3/4 × 111 in.)

Credit Line

W. L. Mead Fund

Reference Number


Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions