Studio of Tawaraya Sotatsu (Japanese, died ca. 1640)
Hanging scroll; ink, color, and gold on paper; 10 x 21 3/4 in. (25.4 x 55.2 cm)
Gift of Chizuko and Frank Korn, in honor of Miyeko Murase, 2006 (2006.570)
This painting is a section of a large painting cut from a pair of folding screens that featured scenes from the eleventh-century novel The Tale of Genji. Remounted as a hanging scroll, this scene is from a chapter of the story known as “The Ivy.” Kaoru, the son of the novel’s main character, Genji, lies in bed, a folding screen shielding him from the evening wind in the hills of Uji. By the faint light of an oil lamp, a maidservant piques the young man’s interest with word of a young woman named Ukifune. The bright, thickly applied pigments are considered a hallmark of Sotatsu’s studio, to which the painting has traditionally been attributed.