Object photography

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Object description

  • attributed to the Hasegawa school (Japanese)
  • Screen with Wisteria and Fence, early 17th century
  • Ink and color on paper, gold leaf, silver leaf
  • Japan
  • Museum purchase with Funds Donated Anonymously , 2001
  • E301679.A


This is a six-fold screen. It pictures wisteria draped over and behind a stack of brushwood with clouds in the left background. The progression of wisteria on this six-fold screen creates a delicate sense of rhythm against a dramatic background, heightened by the spectacular use of gold. The blossoms represent late spring, while the bundled brushwood evokes autumn. The pairing of flowers and firewood also alludes to the duality of love and longing, a common theme in Japanese literature dating back to the 11th-century classic The Tale of Genji. Often cited as the world's first novel, this story of imperial court romance has inspired Japanese art forms for centuries.

Exhibition History

  • Japanese Art Gallery, Peabody Essex Museum; January 06, 2003 through Present