Canal houses just steps away from the water are shrouded in early morning mist in this watercolor by contemporary Shanghai painter Zhao-Nian Xi. The left side of the painting is blank, a variation of a compositional formula of the Southern Sung school used quite often by this artist. (For another example, see our stock #36-58.) In this work, the empty space intensifies the quiet early morning feel of the scene. The water is suggested by a few white lines and faint reflections. The monochromatic dusty, blushy brown scene communicates both the ramshackle grind and fleeting glints of charm in daily life on a small canal. This painting from the late 1990s has the artist's seal in lower right corner and is matted and framed. Dimensions: height 12-1/2" (32 cm), width 15-1/2" (39 cm).