Golden Fantasies: Japanese Screens from New York Collections
Asia Society home
Rice Cultivation in the Four Seasons
Muromachi or Momoyama period, mid- to late-16th century
Pair of six-panel screens; ink and color on paper
John C. Weber Collection
Cat. no. 6

The various stages involved in the production of rice, from planting the seeds to storing the final crop, are represented against the background of the changing seasons. Pictures of farming activities arose in China to accompany Confucian teachings on the moral obligations of men in power to those who labored on their behalf. The theme became part of the repertoire of imagery of Chinese-style figures employed in Zen temples.

The screens are very close to the style of Kano Motonobu (1476-1559), the painter who succeeded in combining Chinese ink brushwork and the use of color pigments for monumental painting schemes in temples. This style is credited with helping establish the Kano school as official painters to the shogun.

Screen 8
The screens will be rotated on April 6, 2004 First rotation Second rotation