20 March 2013
Anonymous (Mid-17th century)
Children Playing Games
Twelve paintings mounted as a pair of six-panel screens; ink, color, gold and gold leaf on paper
26 x 16¼in. (66 x 41.3cm.) each approx. (2)
Yabumoto Soshiro (1914-1987), Tokyo
Idemitsu Museum of Arts, Tokyo
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Idemitsu Museum of Arts, Tokyo, ed., Idemitsu bijutsukan zohin zuroku: Fuzokuga Japanese Genre Paintings in the Idemitsu Collection (Tokyo: Idemitsu Museum of Arts, 1987), pl. 33.
These screens bring together a panoply of children's games. The games include teasing a monkey trainer; sumo wrestling; kickball; konga line; rolling a snowball; blindman's bluff; giving a ride on arms and on shoulders; simulating a daimyo procession with palanquin, lances, swords, horses and the like; the lion dance; and catching butterflies in a cage.
The variety of vivacious poses of the figures is reminiscent of the famous Funaki screen of Scenes in and Around the Capital in the collection of the Tokyo National Museum. The expressions on the faces of the children are related to the Matabei style. The screens probably date from just after the Kan'ei era (1624-30).
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