view lightboxview listview single item

Photo credit: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University

IMPORTANT: Images displayed via this interface may NOT be reproduced without the express permission of the artist or the artist's representative. Please contact the Johnson Museum with any questions regarding image rights and reproduction.

Culture: Japanese
Title: Landscape
Date: 17th century
Medium: Hanging scroll: ink and colors on silk
Dimensions: Image: 27 3/4 x 13 7/8 inches (70.5 x 35.2 cm)
Credit Line: Gift of Martie and Alice Young
Object Number: 88.055
Label Text: Unkoku Toteki was a grandson of Unkoku Togan (1547–1618), who founded the Unkoku school under the patronage of the feudal lord Mori Terumoto in Suo province (presently Yamaguchi prefecture). The Unkoku school was influenced by ink paintings of the Muromachi period (1392–1573) and claimed artistic descent from the great painter Sesshu (1520–1606).

This painting depicts an idealized Chinese landscape in which a Chinese scholar with his servant crosses a bridge at the left, and another scholar rides a mule while traveling along a path leading up to a temple in the towering peaks. The distant mountains and villages beyond the river are dramatically contrasted with the tall pine firmly rooted to the rock at the center of the foreground. The style of the painting continued typical Muromachi compositions that originated in the painting of the Song and Yuan dynasties in China, and was remodeled on fourteenth- and fifteenth-century Chinese landscapes of the Zhe school during the Ming dynasty. ("Tradition, Transmission, and Transformation in East Asian Art," curated by Cornell PhD student Yuhua Ding under the supervision of Ellen Avril and presented at the Johnson Museum January 23-June 12, 2016)


Unkoku Toteki was a grandson of Unkoku Togan (1547-1618), who founded the Unkoku school under the patronage of the feudal lord Mori Terumoto in Suo Province (presently Yamaguchi Prefecture). The Unkoku school began with ink paintings during the Muromachi period (1392-1573) and claimed artistic descent from the great painter Sesshu (1520-1606). Toteki, after the death of his father To'oku (1582-1615), learned painting from his uncle Toeki (1591-1644). This painting depicts an idealized Chinese landscape and continues the typical Muromachi compositions that used the vertical hanging scroll format made popular during the Song and Yuan dynasties in China. Here a Chinese scholar with his servant crosses a bridge at the left, and another scholar rides a mule while traveling along a path leading up to the temple in the towering mountains. The distant mountains and villages beyond the river in the background are dramatically contrasted with the tall pine firmly rooted to the rock at the center of the foreground. (From “A Handbook of the Collection: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art," 1998)

NOTE: This electronic record is compiled from historic documentation which may not reflect the Johnson Museum's complete or current knowledge of the object. Review and refinement of such records is ongoing.