Fishing on a River after Rain


Artist: Yosa Buson 与謝蕪村 (1716 - 1783)
Historical period(s)
Edo period, 1764
Nanga School
Ink and color on silk
H x W: 166.5 x 371 cm (65 9/16 x 146 1/16 in)
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Screen (six-panel)

boat, child, Edo period (1615 - 1868), fishing, Japan, man, river, scholar, willow tree, WWII-era provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Previous Owner(s)

Harry C. Nail Jr.


A brief inscription written in Chinese characters describes the subject of this screen, which is dated 1764 and inscribed with a brief verse: "A fresh breeze sweeps the grass after rain has ceased; the river glows in the setting sun, and fish draw near to men."

The painter Yosa Buson was among the important artists of mid-eighteenth-century Japan who brought to maturity the style of Nanga-school painting, which was influenced by Chinese painting of the late Ming and Qing dynasties. Especially noteworthy is Buson's ability to portray changing aspects of nature. In this screen and it's pair F1961.4, he evokes contrasting images of similar natural settings. A tranquil mood prevails in Clear Evening on a Willow Bank; whereas, this screen shows willows and grasses swept by brisk winds in a heavy, humid atmosphere. The effect of translucent color is enhanced by the luminous support of satin-weave silk, a material used by some Japanese painters, who adopted the practice of painting on satin from their Chinese contemporaries.

Published References
  • Dr. John Alexander Pope, Thomas Lawton, Harold P. Stern. The Freer Gallery of Art. 2 vols., Washington and Tokyo, 1971-1972. cat. 57, p. 170.
  • Masterpieces of Chinese and Japanese Art: Freer Gallery of Art handbook. Washington, 1976. p. 135.
  • Genshoku Nihon no Bijutsu (A Kaleidoscope of Japanese Art). 30 vols., Tokyo, 1966-1980. pl. 104.
  • Kyoto bijutsu. no. 10, 1907. p. 17.
  • Zaigai hiho (Japanese Paintings in Western Collections). 3 vols., Tokyo. p. 114, pl. 87.
  • Zaigai Nihon no Shiho (Japanese Art : Selections from Western Collections). 10 vols., Tokyo, 1979 - 1980. pp. 128-129, pls. 21-24.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum

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