The repetition of S-shaped curves, described by the form of the white bird at the center and the poses of the female nudes, generate a rhythm that flows through this painting. Aoki, who was greatly interested in, and knowledgeable about, history and the world of legend, often depicted figures clothed in garments and customs from the Tempyo era. The influence of the nineteenth-century British painters, especially Edward Burne-Jones, is conspicuous in the composition and particularly the placement of the human figures in his Tempyo series, including this painting. Aoki studied their work intensively, borrowing books with reproductions of their paintings from friends. An extensive collection of books on nineteenth-century British art was also available to him in the Imperial Library and the library affiliated with the Tokyo School of Fine Arts.


  • Title: The Tempyo Era
  • Creator: AOKI Shigeru
  • Creator Lifespan: 1882/1911
  • Creator Nationality: Japanese
  • Creator Gender: Male
  • Date Created: 1904
  • Technique: Oil
  • Physical Dimensions: w755 x h453 cm
  • Object Title: 天平時代
  • Artist Name: 青木繁
  • Medium: canvas

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