Japanese Gallery (Honkan) Room T2
August 11, 2015 (Tue) - September 23, 2015 (Wed)
Gomizuno’o (1596–1680, reign 1611–29) was an emperor during the early Edo period (1603–1868). His wife, Tofukumon’in, was the daughter of the second Tokugawa shogun, Hidetada. By having deep connections with the Tokugawa clan, which belonged to the warrior class, and its ruling government, Gomizuno’o set the direction for relations between the imperial court and the Tokugawa.
Gomizuno’o was also a leader in cultural pursuits such as waka poetry and flower arrangement. His study of the Kokin waka shu poetry anthology through its interpretive text, the Kokin denju, shows that he was a higly-cultured individual, and receiving his teachings was considered a great honor. These circumstances are illustrated through documents accompanying works such as Nijo Tameaki’s Kokin wakashu Poetry Anthology and through contemporary works including Tosa Mitsuoki’s Poems on the Twelve Months with Illustrations. Later, works such as the latter, which combined calligraphy by members of the imperial court with illustrations, were presented to members of the warrior class as gifts. Works like Sumiyoshi Gukei’s Illustrated Album of Essays in Idleness, which feature both superb calligraphy and illustrations, also demonstrate a connection between the imperial court and the warrior class, which Gomizuno’o helped to establish.
Additionally, Gomizuno’o influenced Yamato-e (Japanese-style painting). Tosa Mitsuoki became an official painter to the imperial court and revived the Tosa school of Yamato-e. Meanwhile, the new Sumiyoshi school of Jokei and Gukei, who practiced the same tradition of painting, benefitted from the approval of Gomizuno’o. These painters collaborated with the nobles in Gomizuno’o’s circle to create artworks featuring courtly waka poetry or literature.
This exhibition includes works illustrating Gomizuno’o’s leading cultural role and introduces visitors to the background of Yamato-e painting.