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奇想の系谱展
01
April 2019
[ special report ]
Exhibition information
  • Extension:2019/02/09 ~ 2019/04/07
  • Exhibition hall:TOKYO METROPOLITAN ART MUSEUM
  • Types:Paintings

Lineage of Eccentrics

This exhibition, based on art historian Nobuo Tsuji’s 1970 book, Lineage of Eccentrics, will be the definitive examination of “eccentric paintings” of the Edo period. Appearing in one venue will be major works by eight artists - Ito Jakuchu, Soga Shohaku, Nagasawa Rosetsu, Iwasa Matabei, Kano Sansetsu, Hakuin Ekaku, Suzuki Kiitsu, Utagawa Kuniyoshi.

Elephant & Whale》 is the first painting (painting on a partition) we saw as we enter the exhibition hall. Elephant and whale are the largest mammals on earth, to see them both painted on a partition were extraordinary! Ito Jakuchu was a famous and active painter in Kyoto in the Edo period, he can exquisitely depict Japanese painting (Nihonga) and ink painting, whether it is the animal’s demeanour or movements, it seems that you can feel the vitality of it from the delicate paintings of Itoru. Surprisingly, the colour of these paintings with more than two hundred years of history is still vivid even till now.

Then the display area for Soga Shohaku, a special and rebellious Japanese painter. His favourite topic for his painting is Chinese Buddhism and Taoist portraits for the main theme, his portraits, and his paintings are mostly ink paintings. His works are grotesque and exaggerated, they are full of Chinese characteristics of a combination between Tang and Song Dynasty. As for his landscape painting, they are very soft and sometimes his mountain view is presented in a rectangular shape, with his personal style, very unique. (Sessan Doji Offering his Life to an Ogre) (Immortals).

The third exhibition area, Nagasawa Rosetsu, his painting style is characterised by black and white, large and small extreme contrasts. The surrealistic style of painting gives people extended imaginations. White Elephant and Black Bull

Iwasa Matabei, with a rich and colourful style, like theThe Tale of Yamanaka Tokiwa, Volume Foura drawing vividly depicts the society at the time.

Kano Sansetsu. Talking about the art history of Japanese painting, we have to talk about the "Kano school", it’s one of the famous schools of Japanese painting. The theme and the use of ink originated from Chinese landscape paintings and then evolved into the rich colour partition that became one of the representative art of Japan. Plum Blossoms and Frolicking Birds》《Tiger and Dragonin these two paintings you can clearly see the original creation of the art style.

Bodhidharmaa different style painting to the others, Hakuin Ekaku was advocated to Buddha Dharma for his life, that is why the works on exhibition are all related to Dharma.

One Hundred Birds, One Hundred AnimalsSuzuki Kiitsu. According to the record, he is a talented Ukiyo-e artist who combines bright colours, bold composition and precise depiction to create a unique painting.

Utagawa Kuniyoshi is one of the representative ukiyo-e painters at the end of the Edo period. He used unconventional ideas and solid painting skills to break through the framework of ukiyo-e and created many attractive works. Miyamoto Musashi Kills an Enormous Whale》《Procession of Edo Firemen Sengumi》《Procession of Edo Firemen Sengumi

Photography was not allowed at the exhibition. Because of that, we found some works of this exhibition on the internet to share with you.

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