Page:A history of Japanese colour-prints by Woldemar von Seidlitz.djvu/101

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Survey of Painting


opulent representation of the life of that time. Especial weight was given to the true and accurate rendering of the court ceremonial costumes; but, although the motions of the persons portrayed, as the refined etiquette of the court required, were represented as serious, grave, and dignified, this art never degenerated into pettiness, but always maintained its broad decorative character. The fact that the vertical picture, or kakemono, which makes a more independent appeal, was more rarely used in this period would seem to indicate the beginning of a decline, and accordingly Fenollosa conceives of the whole Tosa school as a revolt from the robuster style of Kanaoka.

The founder of the school, at the beginning of the thirteenth century, was Fujiwara no Tsunetaka, who as Director of Fine Arts bore the title Tosagon no Kami.[1] Other artists of this school are Fujiwara Mitsunaga, whose makimonos are full of movement; also Fujiwara Takanobu, and his son, Nobuzane (1177–1265), who in 1221 painted the picture of the poet Hitomaro, and one of whose pictures, a beautiful study of the saint Kobo Daishi as a boy, is reproduced by Binyon (pl. 6). Keion is mentioned as the founder of a special school, the Sumiyoshi-riu, which lasted into the eighteenth century. In consequence of renewed civil wars, a certain decline seems to have taken place in the second half of the thirteenth century; this decline continued into the fifteenth century, though there still remain for the fourteenth century a number of eminent names, especially Tosa Yoshimitsu. In 1274 came the invasion of the Mongols under Khubla Khan; in 1334 the Hodjo were overthrown by the Ashikaga, and the Ashikaga Shoguns ruled from that date until 1573.

In the beginning of the fifteenth century came the revival

  1. Thence Le Blanc du Vernet (Le Japon artistique et littéraire, p. 28) deduces the name of the school; otherwise Gierke, p. 14 f.; cf. Anderson, Transact., p. 346; Fenollosa, Review, pp. 9, 13 f.; Cat. Burty, p. 3; Appert, p. 142.