Bamboo

A work made of pair of six-panel screens; ink and gold leaf on paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of pair of six-panel screens; ink and gold leaf on paper.

Date:

early 19th century

Artist:

Kishi Ganku
Japanese, 1749-1838

About this artwork

岸駒は、この大胆な竹の作品において、金箔地に墨で描写しただけでほとんど材料を用いず、竹の本質をとらえている。屏風の右隻では、川岸から立ち上がる竹の茎が強調され、一方左隻では、葉が作品の上端を越えて上方へ広がっているかと思わせる。

岸駒は、筆に墨をふくませ、同じ幅を保って画面上を走らせることで、竹の節間を描写している。墨をはじく金箔上のかすれと墨に、膠を加えることで、竹の表面の組織と光の影を自然に映す効果をだしている。

竹の情景の一部を厳格に切り取ることで、間近に立つか座って鑑賞すれば、竹林の中にいるかのように感じさせる。この作品は、それを完全に意識して作成されている。当初、五対一揃いの屏風であったことから、文人たちのサロン的な集まりの際、部屋の周りを囲むように立てることで、伝説の竹林の七賢になぞらえたのではないかと思われる。

In this bold study of bamboo rendered in monochrome ink against a solid ground of gold leaf, Kishi Ganku has captured the essence of the stalks with as few materials as possible. The screen on the right features the stalks of bamboo rising from the ground by a stream, while on the left we imagine the lofty upper reaches of the leaves beyond the top edge of the work.
Ganku rendered the sectional trunks of bamboo by loading the brush with ink and moving it evenly across the surface of the painting. In areas where the ink skipped across the non-absorbent gold or was mixed with animal glue, the results are naturalistic effects mimicking the bamboo’s texture or the play of light on its surface.

The severe cropping of the plants enhances the effect that one has, when standing or sitting close to the screens, of being in the midst of a bamboo grove. This was completely intentional. Evidence suggests that these screens were part of a set of five pairs originally meant to be set up around the perimeter of a room or rooms during a salonlike gathering of would-be literati who compared themselves to the legendary Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove.

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Asian Art

Artist

Kishi Ganku

Title

Bamboo

Origin

Japan

Date

1801–1899

Medium

Pair of six-panel screens; ink and gold leaf on paper

Dimensions

Each 178 x 376 cm (70 x 148 in.)

Credit Line

Russell Tyson Purchase Fund income

Reference Number

1967.378-1967.379

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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