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A Brief History of Japanese Devotion to Chinese Art

A Brief History of Japanese Devotion to Chinese Art / Toyokan Room 8   October 29, 2019 (Tue) - December 25, 2019 (Wed)

  
Buddhist Teachings For Muin Genkai (detail), By Feng Zizhen, Yuan dynasty, 14th century (National Treasure, Gift of Mr. Matsudaira Naoaki)

Chinese painting and calligraphy inspired and served as models for Japanese artists. During the Kamakura (1192–1333) and Muromachi (1392–1573) periods, Japanese monks, samurai and even the court gradually embraced Chinese Chan (Zen) Buddhism. Merchants also brought many Chinese paintings and works of calligraphy, which were hung in Japanese studies and tea rooms.

In the Edo period (1603–1868), Japanese scholars adopted the values and tastes of their Chinese counterparts. They treasured imported paintings and books, and studied with visiting artists and merchants in port towns to learn about the latest trends and techniques. In the Meiji era (1868–1912), Sino-Japanese exchange became even more intense. Japanese businessmen started to travel to China to obtain valuable paintings and calligraphy, and Chinese scholars brought many works to Japan as well. It is their endeavors that form the basis of Japan’s excellent collections of Chinese art. Here we display works from those collections, which remain the subject of Japanese devotion to this day.
 

 Major works in this exhibition
* Works listed below are in the TNM Collection unless otherwise indicated.
 Major works in this exhibition
* Works listed below are in the TNM Collection unless otherwise indicated.
The Zen Monk Dongshan Crossing a Stream, By Ma Yuan, China, Southern Song dynasty, 13th century (Important Cultural Property, On exhibit through November 24, 2019)
Bamboo Grove and Wild Geese, By Unknown Artist, Northern Song - Southern Song Dynasty, 12th century (Important Cultural Property, On exhibit through November 24, 2019)
Withered Trees, Ziting Zubai, Yuan dynasty, 14th century (Important Cultural Property, Private collection, On exhibit from November 26, 2019)
The Four Sleepers, Inscription by Pingshi Rudi, Huaguo Ziwen and Mengtang Tane, Yuan dynasty, 14th century (Important Cultural Property, On exhibit from November 26, 2019)
Hanshan and Shide,  Attributed to Yan Hui, Yuan dynasty, 14th century (Important Cultural Property, On exhibit from November 26, 2019)
Scroll 7 of Chapter 29 of the Records of the Grand Historian, Attributed to Yan Hui, Yuan dynasty, 14th century (Important Cultural Property)
Gravestone Epitaphs for the Wang Shi Er Family in Running Script, By Huang Tingjian, Northern Song dynasty, 11th century
Letter to Lin Dao in Running Script, By Zhao Mengfu, Yuan dynasty, 13th - 14th century (Gift of Mr. Takashima Kikujiro)
Zen Temple Tablet Inscription, By Zhang Jizhi, Southern Song dynasty, 13th century (National Treasure, Lent by Tofukuji, Kyoto)
Buddhist Teachings For Muin Genkai, By Feng Zizhen, Yuan dynasty, 14th century (National Treasure, Gift of Mr. Matsudaira Naoaki)

 

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