Exhibitions

Current

Fantastical Painter, Iwasa Matabei – The Tale of Yamanaka Tokiwa 12 Volumes

2017.03.17|Fri| - 2017.04.25|Tue|

Over View

Exhibition Highlights

 

1.  Displaying the whole twelve volumes of “The Tale of Yamanaka Tokiwa Picture Scroll (Important Cultural Property)” for the first time in three years!

“The Tale of Yamanaka Tokiwa Picture Scroll” is known as a masterpiece of Iwasa Matabei comprised of twelve volumes, and it is rare that you get a chance to see the whole volumes all at once. This time, marking the renewal opening of the museum and for the first time in three years, we are exhibiting the whole twelve volumes with the total length over 70 meters. Please make use of this unique opportunity and enjoy the fascination of this beautiful picture scroll of Matabei to your heart’s content.

 

2. Enjoy the finer details of artworks through the high transparent glass featuring an anti-reflective optical interference coating!

The charms of Matabei’s picture scrolls are his delicate and elaborate brush touch and highly detailed description. At the newly renovated MOA Museum of Art, viewers can thoroughly enjoy every detail of artworks without being bothered with reflection on the exhibition display glass showcases. On top of that, photographs are allowed to be taken at this exhibition and viewers can get closer to feeling the appeal of the exhibits.

  • To protect visitors and objects, the use of tripods, monopods, etc.is not permitted.

 

3. Other Iwasa Matabei’s master pieces from our museum collection, that include three important cultural properties and important art objects, are also on display!

MOA Museum of Art possesses fourteen masterpieces of Iwasa Matabei which include four important cultural properties and three important art objects and it is impossible to talk about Iwasa Matabei without mentioning those works.

At this exhibition, in addition to “The Tale of Yamanaka Tokiwa Picture Scroll”, we are displaying three important cultural properties and three important art objects of Matabei from our museum collection. Please thoroughly enjoy the paintings of Iwasa Matabei in a wide variety of genres, including his monochrome ink-wash paintings using individual brush technique, picture scrolls in uniquely harmonious painting style, and illustrated scrolls of celebrated poets in Yamato-e style.

Main works

THE TALE OF YAMANAKA-TOKIWA  Attributed to Iwasa Matabei Katsumochi(1578 - 1650) Edo Period, 17th c.

Important Cultural Property

During the early Edo period, it became a fad among the daimyōs (military lords) to make into a picture scroll tales from ayatsuri-jyōruri (art of chanting dramatic narration accompanied with puppets) which had been popular in the preceding period. This picture scroll is one such example based on a tale of the warrior hero Yoshitsune. His mother, the Lady Tokiwa, who had left the capital in order to meet Yoshitsune in Ōshu, is murdered in the mountain by bandits, so Yoshitsune takes revenge on these bandits. While this is a masterpiece comprised of twelve-volumes, the unity of the structure is such that it hints to a single artist’s production. The portraits, with rich cheeks and long jaws, show characteristics of Katsumochi’s works. Formerly owned by Matsudaira family of Tsuyama (present Okayama prefecture).

 

PORTRAITS OF POETS: KAKINOMOTO-NO-HITOMARO AND KI-NO-TSURAYUKI Iwasa Matabei Katsumochi(1578 - 1650) Edo Period, 17th c.

Important Cultural Property

Of many of Katsumochi’s works depicting poetic saints using the Yamato-e techniques, this work skillfully incorporates the technique of Chinese monochrome painting. Hitomaro’s portrait (right) is depicted with abbreviated brush stroke technique and Tsurayuki’s portrait (left) is expressed by applying ample fluid ink. From these paintings, it is clear that Katsumochi was familiar with the styles of Liang Kai; a master painter of the Southern Song Academy. The verses on the top and the signature on the bottom are from the same hand and provide a baseline for judging Katsumochi’s handwriting.

 

Events during the Exhibition Period

Art Seminar by our museum curatorial staff (in Japanese only)

1.  Iwasa Matabei - a painter shrouded in mystery & his works

Date & Time 3/25(Sat) 13:30 ~ 14:30

Place: MOA Museum Studio

Charge: Free (admission fee is required separately.)

Number of Applicants: 120 (on a first-come, first-served basis)

 

2. Iwasa Matabei’s picture scrolls focusing on “The Tale of Yamanaka Tokiwa Picture Scroll”

Date & Time: 4/15 (Sat) 13:30~14:30

Place: MOA Museum Studio

Charge: Free (admission fee is required separately.)

Number of Applicants: 120 (on a first-come, first-served basis)

Main Works