Special Exhibition
The National Treasure Irises Screens
The Allure of Color

April 18, 2020 to June 28, 2020

In his Irises folding screens, Ogata Kōrin (1657-1716) depicted clusters of irises on a large gold-foiled picture plane using only azurite blue and malachite green pigments. These three colors, blue, green, and gold (or yellow), are often combined; together they have a distinctive tradition in Japan and in the East in general. The vigorous color sense of this work also reflects an aesthetic characteristic of the Edo period. This exhibition also includes a sutra copied in gold pigment on indigo-dyed dark blue paper, Buddhist paintings from the middle ages to which gold has been added to a design with blue and green as the dominant colors, and a kinpeki sansui (Chinese: jinbi shanshui) or landscape in gold and blue-green, a genre that dates back to the Tang period (618-907). They are joined by ceramics from the Momoyama through the Edo periods in which these three colors play key roles, including innovative ko-kutani and ki-seto wares. With the addition of several other golden folding screens using the same colors, this exhibition attempts to shed new light on the Irises screens.

※Special Exhibition “The National Treasure Irises Screens: The Allure of Color” is cancelled to prevent further expansion of coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.




Nezu Museum

Nezu Museum

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6-5-1 Minami-Aoyama
Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-0062
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