Nagasawa Rosetsu
Japanese, 1754-1799

Terrapin with Its Young, c. 1780
Brush and Ink on paper
Purchase, Friends of the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center Fund
Period: 18th c - Edo period (1615-1868)
Classification: Painting
Dimensions: Overall (Open): 50 1/2 × 29 in. (128.3 × 73.7 cm) Image: 16 × 20 5/8 in. (40.6 × 52.4 cm)
Signatures, Inscriptions and Markings v
Signed: Rosetsu; (sealed): Gyo Nagasawa Rosetsu (1754-99)
Description v
Rosetsu was a Maruyama painter. He was born and raised in the family of a low-ranking samurai of the Yodo clan in Yamashiro and was a student of the painter Okyo, but was dismissed from his studio for his unruly behavior. An intimate friend of the Confucian scholar Minagawa Kien, with whom he occasionally collaborated, Rosetsu was a highly eccentric individual and has been termed one of the small group of ‘Individualist’ painters of the Edo period. The sliding screens that he painted for a number of temples during his travels in the year 1787 mark his stylistic departure from the influence of Okyo. He also painted subjects of the Ukiyo-e (the ‘Floating World’), particu- larly those of the ‘beautiful women.’ He was also fond of animal subjects, painting bold compositions with a touch of humor. This mother terrapin with its young is an example that suggests the engaging maternal bond between this unprepossessing animal and her offspring.
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