> “Tale of Genji”


346 × 150(高さ)cm

“Tale of Genji”

Edo period, 17th century
346 × 150 (height) cm
Folding screen in six panels, painted on paper in ink, mineral pigment, and gold leaf



Dr.K says


At first sight it becomes clear that this screen painting bears a relationship to the studio of Iwasa Matabei (1578-1650), a painter who was active in the early Edo period and who set himself apart from the orthodox Kano style.
The painter of the screen selected the Tale of Genji as his theme. In the first and second panels from the right, we notice a scene from the Utsusemi chapter, while the third and fourth panels depict Wakamurasaki and the fifth and sixth panels the Akashi chapter. Matabei seems to have headed a flourishing studio, a fact that makes it difficult to assign specific dates to his works or those by his atelier. Judging from the depiction of the golden clouds and the choices of color, this screen appears to be the product of Matabei’s final years.
A middle-sized screen (chūbyōbu) at the Yamato Bunkakan that also depicts the Tale of Genji chapters Wakamurasaki and Akashi resembles this work. The level of refinement in the present screen, however, exceeds that of the Yamato Bunkakn work. In light of this quality, the screen adds an important piece to Matabei-style depictions of the Tale of Genji.