Plum, Narcissus, and Bamboo with Magpie

Maker(s)
Artist: Yamamoto Baiitsu 山本梅逸 (1783-1856)
Historical period(s)
Edo period, ca. 1832-1852
Medium
Ink and color on silk
Dimensions
H x W (image): 133.5 x 51.6 cm (52 9/16 x 20 5/16 in)
Geography
Japan
Credit Line
Gift of Klaus F. Naumann, in honor of the 75th Anniversary of the Freer Gallery of Art
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
F1998.78
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Painting
Type

Hanging scroll

Keywords
bamboo, Edo period (1615 - 1868), Japan, kakemono, magpie, narcissus, plum blossom, WWII-era provenance
Provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Label

This painting employs traditional symbolic elements-prunus, bamboo, magpie, and narcissus. In combination they form a rebus-a visual pun-that indicates felicitous beginnings. This elegant and lyrical painting, full of realistic detail, achieves its effect through the heavily sized and closely woven silk that holds the ink like a shimmering film on the surface. Baiitsu's composition contrasts dense vegetation with open space that is penetrated by the magpie weighing heavily on a bamboo branch.

Published References
  • Thomas Lawton, Thomas W. Lentz. Beyond the Legacy: Anniversary Acquisitions for the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery. vol. 1 Washington, 1998. pp. 326-327.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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