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Japan

The Tale of Genji – Chapter 2 – The Broom Tree(Hahakgi), V-6

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Object Details

Culture

Japan
Edo period

Date

18th century

Medium

Album: ink, colors, gold, and lacquer on paper

Dimensions

Image / sheet (part a): 10 1/2 × 9 inches (26.7 × 22.9 cm)
Image / sheet (part b): 10 1/4 × 8 5/8 inches (26 × 21.9 cm)

Credit Line

Gift of Dr. William E. Leistner

Object
Number

84.052.002 a,b

The Tale of Genji, the world-renowned romantic novel written by Lady Murasaki Shikibu in the early e(…)

The Tale of Genji, the world-renowned romantic novel written by Lady Murasaki Shikibu in the early eleventh century, was a popular theme in the Edo period. The Johnson Museum album leaves of the illustrations and accompanying inscriptions have been recently identified as a complete set of the fifty-four chapters that make up the Genji tale. The decorative style of embellished paper sheets on which short excerpts from each chapter are presented is close to the albums of The Tale of Genji inscribed by the second Shogun, Tokugawa Hidetada (1578-1632), now owned by the Tokugawa Museum of Art in Nagoya. The paintings follow the traditional Tosa school style in which figures are depicted in a simple and motionless manner in bright colors and gold leaf, based on pictorial codes from the classic Heian and Kamakura periods (eleventh to fourteenth centuries). They are especially reminiscent of the painting style of Tosa Mitsuyoshi (1539-1613), but they are more simplistic and probably datable to the middle of the seventeenth century. (From “A Handbook of the Collection: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art,” 1998)

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