In Landscape 11, Su draws from his embodied, perceptual experiences of the local forested landscape near his home. Su’s unidentified young male protagonist makes another appearance this time as a headless bathing figure. How an artist manages experience, movement, space and depth is a central, historical concern in Chinese landscape painting. Unlike Western drawing and painting which solves these problems by adopting illusionistic point perspective during the Renaissance, Chinese landscape painting adopts a moving perspective that shifts as one’s eye moves through a composition. By the Song, three methods of depicting a moving perspective were codified in the “Three Distances” or san yuan: “Level Distance” or pingyuan, “Deep Distance” or shen yuan and “High Distance” or gao yuan. Su, here, is actually employing two of these methods: “level distance” in the depiction of space (across the level surface of the water) around his bathing figure and “deep distance” in the depiction of forest trees layered in depth one behind the other. Between these two passages we are confronted with a foreground tree trunk that simultaneously divides and joins these two compositional spaces and exiting the composition to the far left we are confronted even more closely with a dense wall of green foliage. Such shifting treatments of space are characteristic of the traditional, long, horizontal handscroll format and so Su’s adoption of this approach here is well grounded within historical artistic practice. What is entirely new, however, is the close-in, first-person perspective that Su conveys in his shifting treatment of space. In the traditional handscroll, the composition’s narrative and its encompassing space unfolds as if seen from an omniscient perspective: scholars and their servants travel along mountain paths, settle into a mountain retreat, steep tea or drink wine, recite poetry or play the zither. We watch the events unfold in time and space as our eve visually navigates across the handscroll’s long horizontal composition. In Su’s painting, however, the viewer’s perspective is not from an omniscient point of view outside of the composition but from within the composition, as if we ourselves are walking through the forest, hiding behind a tree trunk, pushing through a thicket of leaves. In the long history of Chinese painting, this first-person perspective is entirely missing from traditional landscape composition. By working from his own personal, perceptual experience of his natural surroundings, Su has created a completely original way of handling space: one firmly grounding in traditional painting practice and yet visually completely fresh.