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Exhibitions/ Art Object
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松花堂昭乗書・伝俵屋宗達下絵 立葵下絵和歌色紙 藤原興風
Poem by Onakatomi Yoshinobu with Underpainting of Hollyhocks

Calligrapher:
Calligraphy by Shōkadō Shōjō (Japanese, 1584?–1639)
Artist:
Underpainting attributed to Tawaraya Sōtatsu (Japanese, died ca. 1640)
Period:
Edo period (1615–1868)
Date:
early 17th century
Culture:
Japan
Medium:
Poem card (shikishi) mounted as a hanging scroll; ink, gold, and silver on colored paper
Dimensions:
Image: 7 15/16 x 6 15/16 in. (20.2 x 17.6 cm) Overall with mounting: 53 1/4 x 20 5/8 in. (135.3 x 52.4 cm) Overall with knobs: 53 1/4 x 23 in. (135.3 x 58.4 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Purchase, Mrs. Jackson Burke Gift, 1979
Accession Number:
1979.407.1
Not on view
At the beginning of the seventeenth century there was a renewed interest in classical literature. Eminent calligraphers of the day—including Hon’ami Kōetsu, who also created tea bowls and designed lacquer, and Shōkado Shōjō, a Shingon monk—turned to the painter Tawaraya Sōtatsu and his studio to create beautiful underpainting for their handscrolls and poem cards destined for wealthy patrons. Here, Shōkado Shōjō has transcribed an ancient poem exalting the emperor by Ōnakatomi no Yoshinobu (921–991):

Chitose made
kagireru matsu mo
kyō yori wa
kimi hikarete
yorozuyo ya hemu

Though pine trees are said
to live a thousand years,
the pine shoot plucked
by His Majesty, however,
will flourish forever.
—Trans. John T. Carpenter
Signature: Onakatomi Yoshinobu Ason (Lord Onakatomi Yoshinobu)

Chitose made (Even the pines that last a thousand years-
Kagireru matsu mo How many generations will they live after Kyo yori wa you have pulled them up?)
Kimi ni hikarete
Yorozu yo ya hemu (Translation by Andrew Pekarik)
New York. Japan Society Gallery. "Japanese Calligraphy from Western Collections," October 4, 1984–January 6, 1985.

Kansas City. Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. "Japanese Calligraphy from Western Collections," February 15, 1985–March 31, 1985.

Seattle Art Museum. "Japanese Calligraphy from Western Collections," May 9, 1985–July 14, 1985.

New Haven. Yale University Art Gallery. "Word in Flower: The Visualization of Classical Literature in 17th Century Japan," September 22, 1989–November 12, 1989.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Tea Ceremony Wares of Mino: Shino and Oribe," 1992.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Seasonal Pleasures in Japanese Art (Part One)," October 12, 1995–April 28, 1996.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Masterpieces from the Permanent Collection," July 2, 2005–November 29, 2005.

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. "Poetry and Travel in Japanese Art," December 18, 2008–May 31, 2009.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "A Beautiful Country: Yamato-e in Japanese Art," November 20, 2010–June 5, 2011.

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

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Celebrating the Arts of Japan: The Mary Griggs Burke Collection," October 20, 2015–January 22, 2017.

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