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50th Anniversary Exhibition: Iwasa Matabei and Genji-e — Challenging the Classics

Though Iwasa Matabei (1578-1650) was painting while living in Kyoto and Fukui, it was his move to Edo (present-day Tokyo) in 1637 that became a seminal point in his career. To mark the 380th anniversary since he established himself in Edo, the Idemitsu Museum of Arts is hosting an exhibition focusing on Iwasa's genji-e paintings based on Murasaki Shikibu's 11th-century novel "The Tale of Genji."

Other highlights include genji-e works by Iwasa Katsutomo, a reputable pupil of Matabei, and by Tosa Mitsuyoshi (1539-1613). The influence of Matabei's work on Edo ukiyo-e woodblock print artists, such as Hishikawa Moronobu (1618-94), is also explored. (Yuki Yamauchi)