Maize and Cockscombs

Gold folded tall screen with red flowers, green maize plants
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • Gold folded tall screen with red flowers, green maize plants

Date:

mid 17th century

Artist:

Artist unknown
Japanese

About this artwork

During the Edo period, the prosperity and political unification of Japan under the ruling Tokugawa shoguns led to the emergence of a magnificent Japanese decorative style characterized by a love of bold patterns and bright colors. This new style was supported by the military class, a disenfranchised aristocracy, and a thriving class of merchants and entrepreneurs. The surviving half of an original pair, this splendid screen elegantly embodies both the techniques of ancient court painters and the curiosity and confidence so prevalent in the Edo period. Bursting with sensual fullness, the maize and cockscombs are rendered with the accuracy of a botanical drawing, a testimony to the era’s interest in natural science. The appearance of maize, a grain not native to Japan, indicates a willingness to assimilate new subject matter on the part of Edo artists and patrons.

Currently Off View

Asian Art

Artist

Tawaraya Sôtatsu

Title

Maize and Cockscombs

Origin

Japan

Date

1625–1675

Medium

Six-panel screen; ink, color, and gold on paper

Dimensions

170.2 × 357 cm (67 in × 140 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Kate S. Buckingham Endowment

Reference Number

1959.599

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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