Medium: Hanging scroll; ink and pigments on silk
Date: circa 1880
Painting size: 98 x 20 cm
Mounts size: 182 x 32 cm
Shibata Zeshin was an artist and artisan of superior skill and diversity. He worked as a painter, printmaker and lacquerer.
From age sixteen Zeshin studied painting with Suzuki Nanrei, a pupil of Maruyama Ōkyo, who is celebrated for combining elements of Western naturalism with traditional East Asian brushwork. After nine years with Nanrei, Zeshin moved to Kyoto and spent a further two years with another of Nanrei’s teachers, Okamoto Toyohiko; he would paint in his own version of the Maruyama style for the rest of his life.
Zeshin often presented himself as a guardian of old-time cultural norms, but he also participated enthusiastically in the transformation of artistic life that followed the Meiji Restoration.