White Chrysanthemums

Artist: Ōtagaki Rengetsu 大田垣蓮月 (1791-1875)
Historical period(s)
Edo period or Meiji era, ca. 1850-1875
Ink and color on paper
H x W (image): 99.8 × 29 cm (39 5/16 × 11 7/16 in)
Japan, Kyoto
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Hanging scroll

autumn, chrysanthemum, cursive script, Edo period (1615 - 1868), Japan, kakemono, Meiji era (1868 - 1912), WWII-era provenance
Provenance research underway.

Above her sketch of a blossoming chrysanthemum plant supported by a bamboo stake, the Buddhist nun Rengetsu inscribed a poem of her own composition:

White chrysanthemums
Near my pillow
Perfume the night.
These dreams of many nights of
Autumn will not return.

Rengetsu took Buddhist vows at the age of thirty-three, following a series of personal tragedies. She studied poetry composition with several Kyoto authorities and became well known not only for her verses but also for inscribing them on her own handmade ceramic teapots and bowls.

Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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