Art of the Edo Period (1615–1868)


    • Poem page mounted as a hanging scroll, Momoyama period (1573–1615), dated 1606
      Painting by Tawaraya Sotatsu (Japanese, active early 17th century); Calligraphy by Hon'ami Koetsu (Japanese, 1558–1637)
      Ink on paper decorated with gold and silver

      7 7/8 x 7 in. (20 x 17.8 cm)
      The Harry G. C. Packard Collection of Asian Art, Gift of Harry G. C. Packard, and Purchase, Fletcher, Rogers, Harris Brisbane Dick, and Louis V. Bell Funds, Joseph Pulitzer Bequest and The Annenberg Fund Inc. Gift, 1975 (1975.268.59)

    • Sword blade (katana), Edo period (1615–1868), dated June 1622
      Kanewaka, also known as Takahira (Japanese, active 1609–26)
      Steel

      L. 36 1/2 in. (92.8 cm), edge 28 1/8 in. (71.5 cm)
      Signed and dated: Echu no kami Fujiwara no Takahira / Gen'na hachi nen rokugatsu hi
      Gift of Etsuko O. Morris and John H. Morris Jr., in memory of Dr. Frederick M. Pederson, 2007 (2007.478.2a,b)

    • Stationery box, Momoyama period (1573–1615), early 17th century
      Japan
      Lacquer, with sprinkled gold decoration in Kodaiji style, inlaid with gold and silver foil

      H. 8 1/4 in. (21 cm), W. 17 15/16 in. (45.6 cm)
      Purchase, Lila Acheson Wallace Gift, 1987 (1987.82ab)

    • Koto with Case, early 17th century; fabric koto wrap, 18th and 19th century
      Goto Teijo, Ninth Generation Goto Master (Japanese, 1603–1673)
      Japan
      Various woods, ivory and tortoiseshell inlay, gold and silver inlays, metalwork

      5 1/8 x 9 1/2 x 74 5/8 in. (13 x 24.2 x 189.5 cm)
      Purchase, Amati Gifts, 2007 (2007.194a–f)

    • The Sixth Patriarch of Zen at the Moment of Enlightenment, Edo period (1615–1868), 1635–45
      Kano Tan'yu (Japanese, 1602–1674)
      Ink on paper

      40 x 9 1/2 in. (101.6 x 24.1 cm)
      The Miriam and Ira D. Wallace Foundation Fund, 2006 (2006.174)

    • The Battles of Hogen and Heiji, Edo period (1615–1868), 17th century
      Japanese
      Pair of six-panel folding screens; ink, color, and gold on paper

      Each 60 15/16 in. x 11 ft. 8 in. (154.8 x 355.6 cm)
      Rogers Fund, 1957 (57.156.4-5)

    • Inro with decoration of Portuguese figures, Edo period (1615–1868), 17th century
      Wood with black and gold lacquer

      H. 3 9/16 in. (9 cm)
      The Harry G. C. Packard Collection of Asian Art, Gift of Harry G. C. Packard and Purchase, Fletcher, Rogers, Harris Brisbane Dick and Louis V. Bell Funds, Joseph Pulitzer Bequest and The Annenberg Fund Inc. Gift, 1975 (1975.268.178)

    • Surcoat (jimbaori), Edo period (1615–1868), 17th century
      Japan
      Silk, felt, metallic thread, lacquered wood

      H. 38 3/8 in. (97.3 cm)
      Purchase, Charles and Ellen Baber Gift, 2006 (2006.95)

    • Eight-Planked Bridge (Yatsuhashi)
      Ogata Korin (Japanese, 1658–1716)
      Pair of six-panel folding screens; ink and color on gilded paper

      Each 70 1/2 in. x 12 ft. 2 1/4 in. (179.1 x 371.5 cm)
      Purchase, Louisa Eldridge McBurney Gift, 1953 (53.7.1-2)

    • Rough Waves, Edo period (1615–1868), ca. 1704–9
      Ogata Korin (Japanese, 1658–1716)
      Two-panel screen; ink, color, and gold on gilded paper

      57 11/16 x 65 1/8 in. (146.6 x 165.4 cm); folded: 60 x 32 x 2 1/4 in. (152.4 x 81.3 x 5.7 cm)
      Fletcher Fund, 1926 (26.117)

    • Yukihira and the Salt Maidens, Edo period (1615–1868), ca. 1716–35
      Okumura Masanobu (Japanese, 1686–1764)
      Hanging scroll; ink and color on silk

      33 1/8 x 12 7/8 in. (84.1 x 32.7 cm)
      The Harry G. C. Packard Collection of Asian Art, Gift of Harry G. C. Packard, and Purchase, Fletcher, Rogers, Harris Brisbane Dick, and Louis V. Bell Funds, Joseph Pulitzer Bequest and The Annenberg Fund Inc. Gift, 1975 (1975.268.126)

    • Landscape and Chinese Figures
      Nagasawa Rosetsu (Japanese, 1754–1799)
      Pair of six-panel folding screens; ink on gilded paper

      Each 67 3/8 x 146 3/4 in. (171.1 x 372.7 cm)
      The Harry G. C. Packard Collection of Asian Art, Gift of Harry G. C. Packard, and Purchase, Fletcher, Rogers, Harris Brisbane Dick, and Louis V. Bell Funds, Joseph Pulitzer Bequest and The Annenberg Fund Inc. Gift, 1975 (1975.268.75, 76)

    • Noh costume (nuihaku) with books and nandina branches, Edo period (1615–1868), second half of 18th century
      Japan
      Silk embroidery and metallic leaf on silk satin

      Overall 65 3/4 x 56 3/4 in. (167 cm)
      Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Paul T. Nomura, in memory of Mr. and Mrs. S. Morris Nomura, 1989 (1989.367)

    • Calligraphy of "Maple Bridge Night Mooring" by Zhang Zhi, Edo period (1615–1868), ca. 1770
      Ike Taiga (Japanese, 1723–1776)
      Two-panel folding screen: ink on paper

      68 3/4 x 72 3/4 in. (174.6 x 184.8 cm)
      Signed Sangaku and bearing three seals: Zenshin Sôma Hô Kyûkô, Ike Mumei in, and Nigaku Dôja
      Purchase, Friends of Asian Art Gifts, 2008 (2008.66)

    • Otani Oniji II, dated 1794
      Toshusai Sharaku (Japanese, active 1794–95)
      Polychrome woodcut print on paper

      15 x 9 7/8 in. (38.1 x 22.9 cm)
      Henry L. Phillips Collection, Bequest of Henry L. Phillips, 1939 (JP2822)

    • The Great Wave at Kanagawa (from a Series of Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji), Edo period (1615–1868), ca. 1831–33
      Katsushika Hokusai (Japanese, 1760–1849); Published by Eijudo
      Polychrome ink and color on paper

      10 1/8 x 14 15/16 in. (25.7 x 37.9 cm) (Oban size)
      H. O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929 (JP1847)

    • Morning Glories, Edo period (1615–1868), 19th century
      Suzuki Kiitsu (Japanese, 1796–1858)
      Pair of six-panel folding screens; ink, color, and gold on gilded paper

      70 3/16 x 149 1/2 in. (178.2 x 379.8 cm)
      Seymour Fund, 1954 (54.69.1,2)

    • Daimyô wedding set with pine, bamboo, and cherry blossom decoration, Edo period (1615–1868), 19th century
      Japan
      Sprinkled gold, lacquer

      Hewitt Fund, 1910 (10.7.1–.31)

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    Related

    Timelines (3)

    • China, 1600–1800 A.D.
    • Japan, 1600–1800 A.D.
    • Korea, 1600–1800 A.D.

    Thematic Essays (32)

    • Art of the Pleasure Quarters and the Ukiyo–e Style
    • Europe and the Age of Exploration
    • Heian Period (794–1185)
    • Henri de Toulouse–Lautrec (1864–1901)
    • In Pursuit of White: Porcelain in the Joseon Dynasty, 1392–1910
    • Interiors Imagined: Folding Screens, Garments, and Clothing Stands
    • The Japanese Blade: Technology and Manufacture
    • Japanese Fashion in the Twentieth Century
    • Japanese Weddings in the Edo Period (1615–1868)
    • Japonisme
    • Joseon Buncheong Ware: Between Celadon and Porcelain
    • The Kano School of Painting
    • Lacquerware of East Asia
    • List of Rulers of Japan
    • Ming Dynasty (1368–1644)
    • Momoyama Period (1573–1615)
    • Netsuke: From Fashion Fobs to Coveted Collectibles
    • Noh Costume
    • Orientalism in Nineteenth–Century Art
    • Painting Formats in East Asian Art
    • The Qing Dynasty (1644–1911): Loyalists And Individualists
    • The Qing Dynasty (1644–1911): Painting
    • The Qing Dynasty (1644–1911): The Courtiers, Officials, and Professional Artists
    • The Qing Dynasty (1644–1911): The Traditionalists
    • Rinpa Painting Style
    • Samurai
    • Seasonal Imagery in Japanese Art
    • Shoguns and Art
    • Woodblock Prints in the Ukiyo–e Style
    • Work and Leisure: 18th–Century Korean Genre Painting
    • Yamato–e Painting
    • Yangban: The Cultural Life of the Joseon Literati

    Maps (2)

    • East Asia , 1600–1800 a.d.
    • World, 1600–1800 a.d.

    Index Terms (29)

    Artist

    • Goto Teijo (Japanese, 1603–1673)
    • Hon'ami Koetsu (Japanese, 1558–1637)
    • Kanewaka, also known as Takahira (Japanese, active 1609–26)
    • Kano Motonobu (Japanese, 1476–1559)
    • Kano School (Japanese)
    • Katsushika Hokusai (Japanese, 1760–1849)
    • Nagasawa Rosetsu (Japanese, 1754–1799)
    • Ogata Korin (Japanese, 1658–1716)
    • Okumura Masanobu (Japanese, 1686–1764)
    • Suzuki Kiitsu (Japanese, 1796–1858)
    • Tawaraya Sotatsu (Japanese, active early 17th century)
    • Toshusai Sharaku (Japanese, active 1794–95)

    Geography/Place

    • Japan

    Material and Technique

    • Calligraphy from East Asia
    • Embroidery from East Asia
    • Lacquer
    • Painting in Ink on Paper from East Asia
    • Painting in Ink on Paper from Japan
    • Textile in Silk from East Asia
    • Tortoiseshell
    • Woodcut
    • Woodcut Print from Europe

    Object

    • Screen

    Subject Matter/Theme

    • Landscape from East Asia
    • Landscape from Japan
    • Literature and Literary Connections
    • Scholar
    • Theater
    • Trade and Travel (1600–1800 A.D.)

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    In the harshly controlled feudal society governed for over 250 years by the descendants of Tokugawa Ieyasu (1542–1616), creativity came not from its leaders, a conservative military class, but from the two lower classes in the Confucian social hierarchy, the artisans and merchants. Although officially denigrated, they were free to reap the economic and social benefits of this prosperous age. The tea ceremony, which had been adopted by every class during the Momoyama period, provided the medium in which literary and artistic traditions of the past were assimilated and transformed by highly cultivated men of both the bourgeoisie and the court. By the late 1630s, contact with the outside world was cut off through official prohibition of foreigners. In Japan's self-imposed isolation, traditions of the past were revived and refined, and ultimately parodied and transformed in the flourishing urban societies of Kyoto and Edo. Restricted trade with Chinese and Dutch merchants was permitted in Nagasaki, and it spurred development of Japanese porcelain and provided an opening for Ming literati culture to filter into artistic circles of Kyoto and, later, Edo.


    By the end of the seventeenth century, three distinct modes of creative expression flourished. The renaissance of Heian culture accomplished by aristocrats and cultivated Kyoto townsmen was perpetuated in the painting and crafts of the school that later came to be called Rinpa. In urban Edo, which assumed a distinctive character with its revival after a devastating fire in 1657, a witty, irreverent expression surfaced in the literary and visual arts, giving rise to the kabuki theater and the well-known woodblock prints of the "floating world," or ukiyo-e. In the eighteenth century, a Japanese response to the few threads of Chinese literati culture, introduced by Ming Chinese monks at Manpuku-ji south of Kyoto, resulted in a new style known as bunjin-ga ("literati painting"), or nanga ("painting of the southern school") after the Ming term for literati painting. Throughout the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, these various styles were embraced by Japanese artists and artisans as distinct but nonexclusive and complementary modes of expression.


    Source: Art of the Edo Period (1615–1868) | Thematic Essay | Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History | The Metropolitan Museum of Art