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Bold and Beautiful: Rinpa in Japanese Art

June 28, 2015–January 3, 2016
Freer Gallery

The modern term Rinpa (Rimpa) describes a remarkable group of Japanese artists who created striking images for paintings, ceramics, textiles, and lacquerware. The term itself is based on the art name of Ogata Kōrin (1658–1716). Rinpa artists do not belong to a continuous lineage of master and disciple. Instead, their works are linked by common features such as strong compositions, vibrant fields of color, and thin, pooled ink rooted in the work of the seventeenth-century Kyoto painter Tawaraya Sōtatsu (on view in the Sackler beginning October 2015). The Rinpa style both resonates with tradition and continues to renew Japanese art and design today.

This exhibition features 37 paintings, ceramics, woodblock-printed books, and lacquers by Kōrin, his brother Ogata Kenzan (1663–1743), and later artists inspired by the brilliant simplicity of Rinpa design. It is complemented by a gallery of tea ceramics influenced by Hon’ami Koetsu, Sōtatsu’s principal collaborator.

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Bold and Beautiful: Rinpa Screens


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We are excited to reopen the Freer on October 7, 2017, following a renovation to allow us to better present our art and serve our visitors.
The Sackler remains open, with a full lineup of exhibitions and events both in the museum and around DC.