Kawamura Bumpō, Scattered Fans over Waves

Edo period, early 19th century AD

Pair of 6-fold screen paintings

Kawamura Bumpō (1779-1821) is known mainly for the colour woodblock-printed books that he designed, containing Chinese themes or charming illustrations of Kyoto life. The main bulk of his work and the source of his reputation, however, is thought to have been paintings. This pair of screens is one of very few large-scale works by the artist so far to have come to light.

Bumpō has painted thirty-five fan-shaped papers with a variety of auspicious subjects, such as birds, plants, animals, sages, festival performers, dolls, a dragon, and Mt. Fuji. The papers were pasted in a scattered arrangement onto the large screens, which already had a lightly painted design of foaming waves, making the brightly coloured fans seem to bob about on the water. The fans illustrated show a) the rising sun over Mt. Fuji; b) performers in the Uzumasa Ox Festival; c) a blossoming cherry tree; and d) autumn plants.

Bumpō lived and worked in Kyoto, and was taught by Gan Ku (1749-1838), founder of the Gan (Kishi) school. He combined Gan Ku's rough and vigorous style with the delicacy and beauty of works by Maruyama ōkyo (1733-95) and Go Shun (1752-1811).

The signature on all the fans reads ‘Bumpō'. The seals on a) and b) read 'Bumpō' and on c) and d) 'Miyabi' ('Elegance', the character is in the shape of the magical fungus beloved of Chinese scholars).

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Kawamura Bumpō, Scattered Fans over Waves

Rising sun over Mount Fuji

  • Performers in the Uzumasa Ox Festival

    Performers in the Uzumasa Ox Festival

  • Cherry tree

    Cherry tree

  • Autumn plants

    Autumn plants


More information



Height: 1710.000 mm
Width: 3770.000 mm

Museum number

Asia JA JP ADD 1146n (1999.3-2.01-02)

not found on MERLIN

Gift of Ellis Tinios in memory of his mother, Fotina Pascal Tinios


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