Kakemono: Orchids, Bamboo, and Thorns - Left panel
Ink on Korean paper
late 14th-early 15th century
Exclusive of mounting: 25 x 12 1/4 in. (63.5 x 31.1 cm)
Overall: 58 x 17 1/2 in. (147.3 x 44.5 cm) (show scale)
Asian Art Acquistion Fund
One of a pair (the left panel) of paintings depicting orchids, bamboo, and thornsset on a horizontal ground line with tufts 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 half of pair) "Shorin" at left. The painting is mounted on a pale green silk brocade.
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 two paintings arrived as a pair and are of the same size and have matching mounts. Both have the seal of Bonpo, but only one is signed. Recent scholarly assessment has suggested that the two paintings may not be by the same hand and that one or both may be by an artist other than Bonpo. Further investigation is warranted.
This item is not on view
Gyokuen Bompo (Japanese, 1348-1420). Kakemono: Orchids, Bamboo, and Thorns - Left panel, late 14th-early 15th century. Ink on Korean paper, Exclusive of mounting: 25 x 12 1/4 in. (63.5 x 31.1 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Asian Art Acquistion Fund, 73.123.2 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 73.123.2_IMLS_SL2.jpg)
overall, 73.123.2_IMLS_SL2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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