The Four Accomplishments

Kano Motonobu 狩野元信 Japanese

Not on view

Within a landscape of towering pines, distant peaks, and roaring waterfalls are four scenes of human activity, each alluding to one of the four pursuits deemed appropriate for Chinese gentlemen: music, the board game Go, calligraphy, and painting.

Motonobu, second-generation head of the Kano School of painting, laid the groundwork for the school’s centuries of dominance over mainstream Japanese painting. One of his many achievements was the adaptation of small-scale paintings (like fans and albums) associated with specific Chinese masters to large-scale painting formats such as folding screens and panels. Here, Motonobu employs brush techniques associated with the Southern Song Chinese court painter Xia Gui (active ca. 1195–1225). ).

The Four Accomplishments, Kano Motonobu 狩野元信 (Japanese, 1477–1559), Pair of six-panel folding screens; ink and color on paper, Japan

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.