Fragrant Garden under a Hazy Moon

Nakabayashi Chikutō Japanese

Not on view

In a garden of spring blossoms and mountain-shaped boulders, a group of gentlemen relax, converse, and accept wine and delicacies from youthful boy-attendants. Eroded ornamental garden rocks like those from Lake Tai identify the scene as taking place in China. A hazy moon hangs in the sky while bands of mist, rendered by unpainted areas of silk, obscure the far distance. The poetic title derives from an early, perhaps original, box inscription.

Nakabayashi Chikutō was born the son of a doctor in Nagoya, where he became the protégé of a well-to-do collector of Chinese paintings. He eventually moved to Kyoto with Yamamoto Baiitsu (1783–1856), and both became artists of the Nanga (Literati) school. In addition to painting, he designed images for woodblock-printed illustrated books and authored a number of painting treatises. This work, with its lively subject matter, is unusual for Chikutō, who often created tranquil landscapes in ink, with little, if any, human activity.

Fragrant Garden under a Hazy Moon, Nakabayashi Chikutō (Japanese, 1776–1853), Hanging scroll; ink and color on silk, 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.