“Ekin, the Great”

The Museum of Art, Kochi

Although born into a family of merchants in southwestern Japan, Edo-Period illustrator Kinzo (1812-76) was endowed with such outstanding skills that as an adolescent he moved to Tokyo to study at the prestigious Kano painting school. After returning to his hometown, he continued his career by serving a local patriarch as his personal illustrator. Kinzo’s life started to unravel, however, when he was charged with plagiarism, a scandal that eventually cost him his job. But Kinzo didn’t give up. He later pioneered a genre called shibai-ebyobu, in which he visually summarized storylines of kabuki plays or joruri narrative music in giant folding screens. On show are a total of 200 paintings by Kinzo and his apprentices; till Dec. 16.

The Museum of Art, Kochi; (088) 866-8000; 353-2 Takasu, Kochi-shi, Kochi; Kochi Station, JR Line. 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. (Nov. 3 till 8 p.m.); ¥850 (Free admission on Nov. 3). www.kochi-bunkazaidan.or.jp/~museum/index.html.