Baron Kuki Ryuichi (1852-1931), Japan 
Takashi Yanagi, Kyoto, to 2001
Freer Gallery of Art, purchased from Takashi Yanagi in 2001
 According to Curatorial Note 2, James T. Ulak, April 13, 2001, in the object record.
- Previous Owner(s) and Custodian(s)
Baron Kuki Ryūichi 1852-1931
The sixteen-year-old prince is adorned in a kesa (Buddhist vestment) and carries an incense burner. He is flanked by two attendants; one bears a rolled sutra scroll encased in a vertical holder and the other holds the portable canopy that protects the prince.
1. (James T. Ulak, 13 April 2001) In the upper right and left corners of the painting are twelve lines of calligraphy, mainly descriptive of the image. They include, at the left, a partially legible line reading "the eleventh month, twenty-third day" and a line of script indicating that the painting was solicited as a commission from a temple, although the temple name has been obliterated.
Prince Shotoku (574622) was a Japanese leader renowned for his efforts at national unification as well as for sponsoring the introduction of Buddhism to Japan. In the centuries after his death, a strong cult following produced important religious devotional images in both painting and sculptural formats. The sixteen-year-old prince, bearing an incense burner and garbed in Buddhist vestments, is flanked by two attendants; one carries a rolled sutra. Enveloped in these symbols of ascendant Buddhist power, the young prince pays respect to his dying father, Emperor Yomei (reigned 58587). Here the new order is represented by a self-possessed young prince, who nevertheless honors his origins. This image of the prince is considered the most important example of its kind in a Western collection.
- Published References
- Paths to Perfection, Buddhist Art at the Freer/Sackler. Washington. pp. 174-175.
- Collection Area(s)
- Japanese Art
- Web Resources
- Google Cultural Institute
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