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The Sages of Sorin: Paintings by Kano Motonobu in the Denver Art Museum

The exciting discovery of room panels by Kano Motonobu (1477-1559) from the temple Zuihōin in the Denver Art Museum offers an opportunity to reassess the meaning of architecturally specific paintings in late medieval Japan. Zuihōin, founded in the mid-sixteenth century by the priest Tesshū Sōkyū and supported with the financial backing of the daimyo Ōtomo Sōrin, is one of very few subtemples of Daitokuji monastery that preserves its original abbot's quarters (hōjō). The paintings in Denver and another set of folding screens in the Seikadō Bunko Art Museum in Tokyo allow us to reconstruct the interior space of Zuihōin and examine it through comparison with other Daitokuji subtemples. What emerges is a complex interplay of contemporary Zen priests and ancient Chinese sages, Daoist cosmology, and local topography all brought inside the liturgical and residential spaces of the abbot's quarters. The lecture will also reflect on the later history of the Denver panels in order to retrace their journey from a Kyoto temple to an American museum.

Tuesday, May 04, 2021 - 6:00 PM - 487 Remaining
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