Browse Items (21 total)

Blade for a Tachi (Slung Sword).jpg
By the artist Kanehira.

Kanehira was one of the smiths of the oldest province of Bizen, the most productive site of sword production from the Heian through the Muromachi period. The steel is layered so many times the blade developes visible steel…

The Flying Storehouse..png
    Shigisan engi emaki (Legends of Mt. Shigi scroll) shows the respect for monks, myth, and magic depicting the famous story of the miraculous alms bowl that attached itself to the frugal farmer's grain house and brought it back to the…


Ban Dainagon Ekotoba..png
In response to the large fire in 866 at Kyoto, historically known as the Ōtenmon conspiracy, the retired Emperor Go-Shirakawa commissioned a set of emaki in 1177 to please the angry spirit of Tomo no Yoshio, the great counselor of the state, who is…


Horyu-ji pagoda.jpg
Horyu-ji is a Buddhist temple complex in Japan and contains some of the oldest wooden structures in the world. Located in Ikaruga, Horyu-ji was first built around 607 C.E. but most of the existing buildings come from around 670 C.E. The individual…

During the reign of Emperor Shomu (701-756 C.E), Japan endured a period of great cultural output brought about by state patronage. Throughout his life, Shomu devoted large sums of money for the creation of elaborate Buddhist temples and artifacts…

Picture Scroll of the Tale of Genji - Scene from the Chapter of Hashihime and Yadorigi II.jpg
A characteristic of the Late Heian style is the close attention to detail and can be seen in the delicately gold crafted Japanese screens in the middle ground of the image, and also in the sumptuous fabrics of the aristocrats.

With the…


Illustrated Tale of Genji - The 49th quire Yadorigi.jpg
Yamato-e is traditionally conceived as a Tang-Dynasty stylistic device, but through the popularization of hand-scroll narratives within the imperial court, Japanese painters were able to refine this decorative technique into something stylistically…

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Illustrated Tale of Genji - The 44th quire Takekawa.jpg
The aerial view depicted in the 44th chapter is a great compositional device rarely seen in China but greatly utilized by Japanese artists.

Yoroi Armor with Red-Leather Lacing..png
The rise of the samurai in the late Heian period gave way to a new era of military devoted class that would drastically change art and the way craftsmen would evolve their skills. The martial skills and daily life of the samurai, their governing…

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Yoroi Armor, Late kamakura period (1185-1333), early 14th century..png
From the beginning of their rule, the shogunate promoted a culture that combined aspects of samurai culture and the arts of the imperial court, with the balance between the two shifting in accordance with the interests of the individual shogunate and…

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