Sunday, January 5, 2014

Close-ups from the Audacious Eye

The Audacious Eye show has been up at the Minneapolis Institute of Art since early fall and closes in just a few days. I squeaked in just in time.

It showcases a hundred works from the Bill and Libby Clark collection, which was recently donated to the museum: 1,700 works covering 1,200 years of Japanese art. Many are large and beyond my ability to capture with a camera -- but the details of a few are worth sharing despite my shortcomings.

Death of the Buddha (1682)
Ink and color on silk
A very large work with incredible renderings of weeping people and animals, surrounding a golden Buddha lying on his death bed.

This guy seems to be tearing his hair out.

While the elephant rolls on the ground in grief.

A Meeting of Japan, China, and the West (late 18th or early 19th century)
by Shiba Kokan, 1747-1818
Ink and color on silk

Kokan "is considered the the father of Western-style painting in Japan…. The European in the image is thought to be the German doctor Lorenz Heister, whose writings circulated in Japan in the mid-18th century."

The combination of a Japanese style with Western perspective made this an arresting image from across the room.

Kyoto Maiden and Peeking Boy (1830s) by Mihata Joryo
Ink and color on silk

My eye was drawn by the color and brush work of the maiden's robe…

But I couldn't show this piece without including the grotesque image of the peeking boy, too:

Tomoe-gozon (early 20th century) by Miki Suizan, 1887-1957
Ink and color on silk

Tomoe-gozon was a female samurai warrior of the 12th century "admired for her beauty and fighting skills":

Daruma (1917) by Tsuji Kako, 1870-1931
Ink and color on paper

Daruma was a 6th century Indian Buddhist monk whose Sanskrit name was Bodhiddharma. He's is said to have founded Zen Buddhism.

This image makes me laugh because it looks so much like a Woolly Willy character. Plus he's wearing pink. Oh, the culture shock if he were to visit the Target toy aisle of today.

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