For the first time in history, 250-year old paintings by the Japanese artist Ito Jakuchu (1716 – 1800) have crossed the seas to be displayed at Washington DC’s National Museum of Art. Dōshoku sai-e (Colorful Realm of Living Beings), the 27-scroll set of intricately painted subjects from the natural world, are considered a cultural treasure in Japan and are actually being lent to the Museum by Japan’s imperial family to commemorate the country’s gift of 3,000 cherry trees to the U.S., 100 years ago.
The nature paintings are accompanied by Jakuchu’s “Sakyamuni Triptych” – three Buddhist deities that overlook the bird-and-flower paintings to serve as the exhibit’s centerpiece.
The exhibition runs for 1 month only, from March 30 – April 29, 2012. You can see a preview of the actual exhibition over on Yoshi Suzuki’s blog.