About the Works

Scene of Rice Cultivation

Attributed to Kano Sanraku

  • Scene of Rice Cultivation / Attributed to Kano Sanraku
  • Scene of Rice Cultivation / Attributed to Kano Sanraku

Minneapolis Institute of Arts, The William Hood Dunwoody Fund and Gift of funds from Louis W. Hill, Jr. 81.1.1-16

These images are based on the high resolution facsimile produced by the Tsuzuri Project. Unauthorized copying, duplication, or transfer of these images is strictly prohibited.

Attributed to Kano Sanraku
Historical era:
Edo (17th century)
printed, gold paint on washi paper
sixteen sliding doors
High Resolution Facsimile of Japanese Art Abroad
Spring : H78.0 × W86.0 cm
Summer : H78.0 × W84.0 cm
Autumn and winter : H177.0 × W92.0 cm
(Dimensions refer to individual screens.)
Daikakuji Temple at the former Saga Imperial PalaceMAP
Current owner:
Minneapolis Institute of Arts
ink, color, and gold paint on washi paper

Various paintings generically entitled "scenes of farming" depict rice cultivation over the four seasons, from planting and irrigation to harvesting and tilling. It is believed that this motif was developed as a means of depicting for the Chinese emperor how farmers tended their fields. Under Confucianism, agriculture was considered the basis of an orderly society; therefore, after this motif made its way to Japan in the Muromachi period, the ruling class ordered many paintings in this motif. This work is believed to have been first displayed in the Take-no-ma (bamboo room) of Shoshinden of Daikakuji Temple in Kyoto. According to documentation accompanying this piece, the temple consigned the painting of the sliding doors to the painter Ooka Shunboku in 1755. This work is now in the possession of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. Despite bearing no signature or seal, it has been attributed to Kano Sanraku — who bequeathed this and a number of other works to Daikakuji Temple — because the composition, brushstrokes, and depiction of rocks and trees are characteristic of the Kano school of painting.

About the Works