Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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狩野山卜筆四季花鳥図屏風
Flowers and Birds of the Four Seasons

Artist:
Kano Sanboku (Japanese, active late 17th–early 18th century)
Period:
Edo period (1615–1868)
Date:
late 17th century
Culture:
Japan
Medium:
Pair of six-panel folding screens; ink, color, and gold on paper
Dimensions:
Image: 59 in. x 12 ft. 1/2 in. (149.9 x 367 cm)
Classification:
Screens
Credit Line:
Purchase, Friends of Asian Art Gifts, 1999
Accession Number:
1999.204.1, .2
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 227
The right-hand screen features plum blossoms with other spring flowers growing nearby; farther to the left, the irises of summer are in bloom. Nightingales and cuckoos celebrate both seasons. The left-hand screen depicts autumn and winter, represented by hibiscus, snowy bamboo, a kingfisher, and pheasants. Each screen bears two seals of Kano Sanboku. Little is known about Sanboku except that he was a student of both Kano Sanraku (1559–1635) and Kano Sansetsu (1590–1651), the two great masters of the Kano school’s Kyoto branch. His subdued depiction of the four seasons recalls the art of Sansetsu and is almost devoid of color, shunning the exuberance that appealed to the taste of warrior clients of the early Edo period.
Signature: Two seals in red, reading "Fukyū-ga" (Painted by Fukyū), and "Fukyūshi" (Man named Fukyū) are impressed on each screen.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Graceful Gestures: A Decade of Collecting Japanese Art," September 29, 2001–March 10, 2002.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Mighty Kano School: Orthodoxy and Iconoclasm," December 18, 2004–June 5, 2005.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "A Sensitivity to the Seasons: Spring and Summer," December 17, 2005–June 4, 2006.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Graceful Gestures: Two Decades of Collecting Japanese Art," 2007.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "A Drama of Eyes and Hands: Sharaku's Portraits of Kabuki Actors," September 20, 2007–March 24, 2008.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Animals, Birds, Insects, and Marine Life in Japanese Art," June 26, 2008–November 30, 2008.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Landscapes in Japanese Art," June 24, 2010–November 7, 2010.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Japanese Bamboo Art: The Abbey Collection," June 13, 2017–February 4, 2018.

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