This emaki handscroll’s composition of flora in a seasonal progression celebrates longevity with its auspicious motif of cranes. The brilliant colors, strong ink outlines, gold-leaf background on silk, and profusion of pictorial elements are typical of the decorative formula established by Kano school.
In its elegant grandeur this handscroll reflects the lavish taste that prevailed in the mansions and temples of the city of Nagasaki.
In Japan between the 10th and 16th centuries, large numbers of emaki, literally “painted roll” were produced to educate, record, and entertain. As with Buddhism, tea, sericulture and writing, the Japanese adopted a Chinese concept and turned it into something uniquely Japanese in execution.
The illustrated handscroll, or emaki, has traditionally been a format that is particularly suited for narrative painting. Like a book, a handscroll is an intimate object that is held in the hands and is ideally viewed by only a few people at a time. Composed of sheets of paper or silk joined horizontally and rolled around a dowel, handscrolls are unfurled one segment at a time. Reading a handscroll can become an almost cinematic experience as the viewer scrolls through a narrative from right to left, rolling out one segment with his left hand as he re-rolls the right-hand portion.
Provenance; prominent Japanese family (Maeda) in the Nagasaki prefecture. Thence by descent.
Dimensions: 12.5ft (150 inches) long; 19 inches high (3.81 meters long; 48.2 cm high).
Condition: consistent with age but still very vibrant colors and strong. Edges are raw. This item is extremely rare and unique. Scroll has not been cleaned or repaired. Original condition.
Interested buyers are highly encouraged to ask all necessary questions before purchase. Thank you.