Autumn Trees and Grasses by a Stream, One of a pair of six-panel folding screens; ink, color, gold, and silver on paper, Japan

渓流春秋草木図屏風
Autumn Trees and Grasses by a Stream

Period:
Edo period (1615–1868)
Date:
late 17th–early 18th century
Culture:
Japan
Medium:
One of a pair of six-panel folding screens; ink, color, gold, and silver on paper
Dimensions:
48 in. x 10 ft. 3 in. (121.9 x 312.4 cm)
Classification:
Screens
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1915
Accession Number:
15.127
Not on view
The gently meandering stream, flowing through time and space, is unpainted except for the lines of ink that accentuate its softly curving form. A single clump of red azalea contrasts with the intense green of the pines. A glimpse of cherry blossoms in evanescent glory before they scatter on the stream marks the peak of spring, while the mountain rose (kerria) on the far bank betokens its passing.

The stream flows into autumn on the left screen, through sunlit plumes of grass and huge, already brown leaves on a magnolia tree that all but obscures the bending forms of flowering bush clover and chrysanthemum beyond. To the left, golden ginkgo leaves shimmer in the late afternoon light with bold red and white maple leaves.

The painting encapsulates stylistic features of Rinpa artists across a couple of generations, beginning with Tawaraya Sōtatsu in the early seventeenth century, and extending to Ogata Kōrin and anonymous Rinpa artists working in his wake.

(One of a pair; see 49.35.2)
[ Yamanaka & Co. , Kyoto and New York, until 1915; sold to MMA]
New York. Asia House Gallery. "Byōbu: Japanese Screens from New York Collections," January 14, 1971–March 14, 1971.

Nagoya City Museum. "Rimpa, Succession of Beauty: Sotatsu, Korin, Hoitsu, Kiitsu," April 23, 1994–May 22, 1994.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Art in Early Japan," 1999–2000.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Enlightening Pursuits," February 28, 2001–August 5, 2001.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "A Sense of Place: Landscape in Japanese Art," May 8, 2002–September 8, 2002.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Flowing Streams: Scenes from Japanese Arts and Life," December 21, 2006–June 3, 2007.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Poetry and Travel in Japanese Art," December 18, 2008–May 31, 2009.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "A Sensitivity to the Seasons: Summer and Autumn in Japanese Art," June 24, 2011–October 23, 2011.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Designing Nature: The Rinpa Aesthetic in Japanese Art," May 26, 2012–January 13, 2013.