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Article

Chinese, 14th century, male.

Active in the first half of the 14th century, during the Yuan dynasty.

Painter.

Bo Ziting was a Buddhist painter from Jiading (Jiangsu) who painted rocks and flowers.

Article

Masatomo Kawai

[Gyokukei]

(1348–c. 1420).

Japanese Zen monk, scholar, calligrapher, poet and painter. He began his training as a monk at Nanzenji in Kyoto, under Shun’oku Myōha, the nephew and disciple of Musō Sōseki, one of the leading Zen prelates of the Muromachi period (1333–1568). His other teachers included the Zen recluse Shakushitsu Genkō and Gidō Shūshin, under whom he studied literature. A trusted adviser of the fourth Ashikaga shogun, Yoshimochi, Gyokuen was appointed to the prestigious abbacies of Kenninji (c. 1409) and Nanzenji (1413) in Kyoto. His true wish, however, was to retire from the world, and in 1420, after a disagreement with Yoshimochi, he left Kyoto to lead a life of seclusion. An accomplished poet, Gyokuen also brushed colophons on many shigajiku (poem-painting scrolls) of the period, including Josetsu’s Catching a Catfish with a Gourd (c. 1413–15; Kyoto, Myōshinji). His own painting, which shows the influence of the mid-14th-century Chinese priest–painter Xue Chuang and of Tesshū Tokusai, strongly reflects his literary disposition. He is especially well known for his subdued monochrome ink paintings of orchids (emblems of moral virtue), 30 of which have survived (...

Article

Chinese, 14th century, male.

Born in Qiantang (Zhejiang).

Monk-painter.

Ding Qingji was a Taoist monk who painted portraits of Buddhist and Taoist figures in the styles of Li Song and Ma Lin.

Article

Eiga  

Japanese, 14th century, male.

Active 1350-1395.

Painter.

Eiga specialised in Buddhist painting and is one of the earliest representatives of Muromachi ink painting. The honorific title ‘hogen’ was bestowed on him.

He probably painted the Portrait of Prince Shokotu before 1351, a work that has since disappeared, whilst his ...

Article

Yan Hui  

Chu-Tsing Li

[ Yen Hui ; zi Qiuyue ]

(b Jiangshan, Zhejiang Province; fl late 13th century–early 14th).

Chinese painter . He was a painter of Buddhist and Daoist figures, ghosts and landscapes, who was well respected as a painter by the literati by the end of the Song period (960–1279). Of some 35 paintings attributed to him, only a few can be considered to be genuine; among these, the best known are those mounted as a pair of hanging scrolls (ink and colour on silk; Kyoto, Chion’in) depicting two Daoist immortals, Li Tieguai and Liu Haichan, both of which are executed in the extremely realistic style for which Yan is known. There is special attention to physiognomy—to the point of grotesqueness—to volume and to modelling of the body, and to the strong contrast between light and dark areas. Both works also include a misty landscape that serves as a background to the figures, a feature derived from landscape painting of the Southern Song period (1127–1279...

Article

Chinese, 13th – 14th century, male.

Activec.1270-1300.

Born in Zhongshan (Hebei).

Painter.

Liu Guandao painted landscapes, portraits and religious (Buddhist and Taoist) figures. In 1279 he was commissioned to paint the portrait of Kublai Khan.

Beijing (Palace Mus.): Immortals Celebrating the Birthday of Xi Wangmu...

Article

Nicole Fabricand-Person

[Kichizan, Kitsuzan; Hasōhai]

(b Awajishima [now in Hyōgo Prefect.], 1351; d Kyoto, 1431).

Japanese Zen monk and painter. Active during the Muromachi period (1333–1568), he became superintendent in charge of the monastic buildings and the head of a leading painting workshop at the temple Tōfukuji in Kyoto at a time when Chinese ink-painting techniques, brought to Japan by Buddhist monks from the 13th century onwards, were being adapted by Japanese artists (see Japan, §VI, 4, (iii)). Minchō’s painting epitomizes the early stages of this turning-point. Works attributed to Minchō range from conservative Buddhist paintings in colour to secular landscape compositions executed in the new ink-painting technique (suibokuga). He is especially known, however, for those of his paintings that bridge these two styles.

A conservative Buddhist painting style characterized Minchō’s early works. The Gohyaku rakan (‘Five hundred arhats’; 50 hanging scrolls; c. 1386; Tokyo, Nezu A. Mus. and Kyoto, Tōfukuji), for example, are typical of the carefully coloured paintings on silk associated with professional Buddhist painters (...

Article

Myotaku  

Japanese, 14th century, male.

Born 1308, in Mino; died 9 October 1388, in Kyoto.

Monk-painter.

Myotaku was a painter of the suiboku (ink painting) school. He lived in the Kokusei-ji Monastery in Kyoto and specialised in Buddhist subjects. He was a student of Muso Kokushi and came under the influence of Mushi and Yen Hui....

Article

Masatomo Kawai

[Kaō Ryōzen]

(b Chikugo Prov. [now Fukuoka Prefect.]; d Kyoto, 1345).

Japanese painter and Zen monk. Although he was not a professional artist and painted as part of his religious austerities, Kaō is one of the most important suibokuga (‘ink painting’) painters of his age (see Japan §VI 4., (iii)). He began his religious training at Kenchōji in Kamakura. In 1319 he travelled to China to study Zen (Chin. Chan) Buddhism. During his stay in China, Kaō received instruction from the Zen recluses Zhongfeng, Hingbon, Shicheng (1270–1342) and Gulin Quingmou, with whom he studied poetry composition and devotional ink painting. In 1326 Kaō returned to Japan with Qingzhao Zencheng. He then served as abbot both of several Gozan (‘five mountains’; hierarchy of Zen temples) temples, including Manjūji, Kenninji and Nanzenji in Kyoto, and of Sūfukuji Temple in Hakata (now Fukuoka Prefect.). Kaō’s representative works include Kanzan (Hattori priv. col.), Portrait of Kensu Ōsho (Tokyo, N. Mus.) and ...

Article

Article

Ken Brown

School of Japanese specialists in Buddhist painting (ebusshi), which flourished from the late Heian (ad 794–1185) to early Muromachi (1333–1568) periods. It rivalled the Kose school of ebusshi in Nara, specialists in refined, decorative Buddhist painting. The school was supposedly founded in the 11th century by Takuma Tamenari (fl c. 1053), the artist to whom wall paintings at the Byōdōin are attributed by legend. Takuma Tametō (fl c. 1132–74), a priest with connections to the aristocracy and to the monastic community on Mt Koya, is also associated with the genesis of the school. His Kontai Butsuga chō (‘Album of Buddhist paintings in dark and light colours’), an album of Buddhist iconographic drawings (Nara, Yamato Bunkakan, and other collections), offers an important early example of the ebusshi’s method. Tametō’s sons, Takuma Tametoki (fl mid-12th century), (1) Takuma Shōga and ...

Article

Article

Masatomo Kawai

(fl 1342–66).

Japanese painter, poet, calligrapher and Zen monk. He was a disciple of Musō Sōseki, the founder of Tenryūji in Kyoto. He went to China during the Yuan period (1279–1368) to study devotional poetry with the Chan (Zen) monk Gulin Qingmou. In addition to his Zen training, Tesshū also studied suibokuga (ink painting) (see Japan §VI 4., (iii)), and his style shows the influence of the Yuan-period painter Xuechuang Puming, who specialized in ink paintings of orchids (see China, People’s Republic of §V 3., (vi)). Tesshū’s representative work is Ranchikuzu (‘Orchids and bamboo’; Princeton U., NJ, A. Mus.), which bears an inscription by Gidō Shūshin. Other extant works include the Ransekizu (‘Orchids and rocks’; Tokyo, Gotoh Mus.) and the Roganzu (‘Reeds and wild geese’; New York, Met.). After his return to Japan in 1347 he became head of Hodaji in Awa (now Tokushima Prefect.), and in ...

Article

Yan Hui  

Chinese, 13th – 14th century, male.

Active during the Yuan dynasty.

Born in Jiangshan (Zhejiang).

Painter.

Yan Hui was well known for his representations of Buddhist and Taoist figures but was held in low regard in China because of his overly strong emotional expression, as can be seen in the hanging scroll ...

Article

Henrik H. Sørensen

(fl late 13th century to early 14th).

Korean painter of Buddhist subjects of the Koryŏ period (918–1392). He is said to have painted in the style of the Li–Guo school, an approach to landscape painting developed by the Chinese painters Li Cheng and Guo Xi. Two of No Yŏng’s paintings survive, one, dating to 1307, of the bodhisattva Kshitigarbha, the other of Amitabha Buddha (both gold outline on black lacquered wood, 224×130 mm; Seoul, N. Mus.). The former has Kshitigarbha, who guides the souls of the suffering to the underworld, as the main image, together with a smaller depiction of the bodhisattva Manjushri, shown standing in the upper right-hand corner, and a host of devas descending on Mt Kŭmgang (Diamond), one of the holy mountains of Korea. Kshitigarbha, who is clad in a billowing monk’s robe, is shown seated on a flat, stylized rock among a swirl of clouds. In his right hand he holds a crystal ball, his characteristic attribute, while his left hand rests on his left knee. One foot is touching a lotus positioned on the ground, the other is resting on the seat. On both sides of the ...

Article

Yuen  

Japanese, 14th century, male.

Active c. 1384.

Painter.

Yuen painted Buddhist subjects.

Article

Japanese, 14th century, male.

Active c. 1352-1389.

Painter.

Yukimitsu was appointed head of the e-dokoro (court painting bureau) in 1352 with the title Lord of Echizen. In 1362, as a specialist in Buddhist images, he executed the illustrations for the six volume Jizo Reikenki (The Miracles of Jizo, the Bodhisattva Ksitigarbha)....