Japanese Art Gallery

This gallery gathers public domain works.

※ Works that passed the copyright protection period after the death of the author are posted.

kanou tanyuu

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kanou tanyuu  (狩野探幽)  1602 - 1674

Kano Tan'yu (狩野 探幽, 4 March 1602 ? 4 November 1674) was one of the foremost Japanese painters of the Kano school. His original given name was Morinobu; he was the eldest son of Kan? Takanobu and grandson of Kano Eitoku. Many of the most famous and widely known Kan? works today are by Tan'yu. In 1617, Tan'yu was appointed by the Tokugawa shogunate to become the shogunate's first official painter. Over the following years, he was given many highly prestigious commissions. Over the 1620s and 1630s, he created a number of large-scale works for Edo Castle, Nijo Castle, Osaka Castle, Nagoya Castle, and Nikk? Tosho-gu. Prolific in a variety of painting styles, Tan'yu's most famous works are probably those he produced for these large-scale commissions. They are screens and panels, prime examples of the Momoyama style, depicting natural subjects such as tigers, birds and plants, in bright colors and with extensive use of gold leaf. The gold, often used to represent clouds, water, or other background elements, would reflect what little light was available indoors, brightening a castle's dark rooms.