Landscapes of the Natural World in Japanese Art

One of the most recognizable traits of Japanese art is their beautiful depiction of the natural world in landscapes. My gallery focuses on the accomplishments of style in the Edo period of Japan and includes works that showcase or portray definitive artistic styles from this era which include but are not limited to the Rinpa school, Nanga Art, and Ukiyo-e. Japan has a rich and vibrant style of art that was inspired heavily by Chinese art, but eventually developed a style all its own that is distinctly Japanese. Landscapes of the natural world are a particular point of fascination because of the way an entire landscape is captured and rendered with delicate precision and detail. There is an reverence and devotion to beauty and perfection which is evident in the treatment of the several elements within a piece which can range from flowers, trees, mountains, and even clouds.

 

The depiction of nature in Japanese was expressed anew in Ogata Korin's "innovation was to depict nature as an abstract, using numerous color and hue gradations, mixing colors on the surface to achieve eccentric effects, and the liberal use of precious substances like gold and pearl." In a revival of theRinpa School of painting, founded by Hon'ami Koetsu in the early days ofEdo Period which produced artworks for the wealthy classes' desire for more art, Korin and his younger brother Kenzan continued the legacy of theRinpa School but ended up defining the style that it would embody as the years continued. Their subject matter was focused primarily on nature and it "involves simple natural subjects such as birds, plants, and flowers with the background filled in with gold leaf. Emphasis on refined design and technique became more pronounced as the Rinpa style developed."

 

Source: Boundless. “Horyuji Temple.” Survey of Non-Western Art. Boundless, 21 Jul. 2015. Retrieved 04 Feb. 2016 from https://www.boundless.com/users/159928/textbooks/survey-of-non-western-art/japan-before-1333-ce-15/the-asuka-period-104/horyuji-temple-477-4715/Source: Boundless. “Rinpa School Painting.” Survey of Non-Western Art. Boundless, 21 Jul. 2015. Retrieved 04 Feb. 2016 from https://www.boundless.com/users/159928/textbooks/survey-of-non-western-art/japan-after-1333-ce-30/the-edo-period-188/rinpa-school-painting-684-5436/Source: Boundless. “Rinpa School Painting.” Survey of Non-Western Art. Boundless, 21 Jul. 2015. Retrieved 04 Feb. 2016 from https://www.boundless.com/users/159928/textbooks/survey-of-non-western-art/japan-after-1333-ce-30/the-edo-period-188/rinpa-school-painting-684-5436/Source: Boundless. “Horyuji Temple.” Survey of Non-Western Art. Boundless, 21 Jul. 2015. Retrieved 04 Feb. 2016 from https://www.boundless.com/users/159928/textbooks/survey-of-non-western-art/japan-before-1333-ce-15/the-asuka-period-104/horyuji-temple-477-4715/Source: Boundless. “Rinpa School Painting.” Survey of Non-Western Art. Boundless, 21 Jul. 2015. Retrieved 04 Feb. 2016 from https://www.boundless.com

 

Featuring a delicate rendition of a budding plum tree, Ogata Korin's piece is one of the hallmarks in visual style in Japanese landscape art as it depicts the natural world with minimalistic elegance.
Depictions of the natural world and its landscapes are found in kimono with intricate designs are a work of art all their own, using textures, colors, and patterning to recreate beautiful landscapes.
Hiroshige provides a sophisticated rendering of life that anyone can enjoy at a time where woodblock printing made art accessible across class divisions. Hiroshige captures a moment in time of beauty.
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This user gallery has been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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