Skip Navigation

Kakemono: Orchids, Bamboo, and Thorns - Right panel

Gyokuen Bompo

Asian Art

MEDIUM Ink on Korean paper
  • Place Made: Japan
  • DATES late 14th–early 15th century
    PERIOD Muromachi Period
    DIMENSIONS Image: 25 x 12 1/4 in. (63.5 x 31.1 cm) 58 x 17 1/2 in. (147.3 x 44.5 cm)  (show scale)
    CREDIT LINE Gift of The Roebling Society
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION One of a pair (the right panel) of hanging scroll paintings depicting orchids, bamboo, and thorns in slightly dry, fluid brushstrokes. Accession card: Signature and seal of artist. Condition: Arrived in an outer box and inner box of pre-modern date. Also wrapped in green silk cover. Excellent. Right Panel (73.123.1): Painting or orchids, bamboo and thorny branches set along a ground line to the far right of the composition. The long thin leaves of the orchid plant rise vertically and diagonally into the space, framed by the branches of bamboo along the lower edge and the thorns along the right edge. The background is unpainted. A seal of the artist is located at the right, at center. The painting is mounted on pale green silk brocade. Condition: Areas of wear from old damage while rolled are evident. Left Panel (73.123.2): Painting of orchids and thorns set on a horizontal ground line with tufts of a small ground plant at the lower part of the composition. The leaves of the orchid plant rise vertically and spread out radially with four open blossoms while the thorn rises and curves downward in three branches. The artist's signature Gyokuen Bompo and seal (same as right of pair) "Shorin" at left. The painting is mounted on pale green silk brocade. Condition: excellent. As noted in "Masterpieces in the Brooklyn Museum," (p. 69) Gyokuen Bompo was one of the great literati monks of the early 15th century. Although he never studied in China, he became quite famous in Japan for his skill in Chinese poetry, Chinese calligraphy, and ink paintings or orchids. His orchid paintings followed the style of the Chinese master Hsueh-ch'uang and the Japanese Tesshu Tokusai. The paintings arrived as a pair, the same size and in matching mounts. Recent assessment of the two paintings has suggested that they may not have been painted by the same hand, and that one or both were painted by an artist other than Gyokuen Bompo. Further investigation is warranted.
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CAPTION Gyokuen Bompo (Japanese, 1348–1420). Kakemono: Orchids, Bamboo, and Thorns - Right panel, late 14th–early 15th century. Ink on Korean paper, Image: 25 x 12 1/4 in. (63.5 x 31.1 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of The Roebling Society, 73.123.1 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 73.123.1_SL1.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 73.123.1_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
    "CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
    RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
    This work may be in the public domain in the United States. Works created by United States and non-United States nationals published prior to 1923 are in the public domain, subject to the terms of any applicable treaty or agreement. You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this work. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form (charges apply). The Museum does not warrant that the use of this work will not infringe on the rights of third parties, such as artists or artists' heirs holding the rights to the work. It is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions before copying, transmitting, or making other use of protected items beyond that allowed by "fair use," as such term is understood under the United States Copyright Act. The Brooklyn Museum makes no representations or warranties with respect to the application or terms of any international agreement governing copyright protection in the United States for works created by foreign nationals. For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress, Cornell University, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, and Copyright Watch. For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright. If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact
    Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome any additional information you might have.