Historical period(s)
Edo period, 17th century
Ink, color, and gold on paper with original silk kimono fabric mounting
H x W (image): 78.6 x 31.3 cm (30 15/16 x 12 5/16 in)
Credit Line
Gift of Victor and Takako Hauge
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Hanging scroll

Edo period (1615 - 1868), Hauge collection, Japan, kimono, woman, WWII-era provenance
Provenance research underway.

The subject of this painting may be Ono no Komachi (circa 825. circa 900), a poet who is included among the six great classical poets (Rokkasen). Renowned for her poetry as well as her beauty, Komachi later became the subject of legends, No plays, and stories retold and illustrated in popular media during the Edo period (1615-1868).

The decorated oblongs at the top of the painting represent shikishi (poem sheets), which probably were intended to be inscribed by a calligrapher. Her long, flowing hair and facial features, including the broad eyebrows applied with makeup above the natural brow line, reflect the customs of the imperial court. Her pose and garments, however, resemble those of contemporary courtesans of the early Edo period (1615-1868), often depicted in paintings of beautiful women and men of the floating world of entertainers and actors. This painting, embellished with gold, is a luxurious production that is also noteworthy for its mounting made from antique kimono silks.

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