Edo Period, 17th Century
Fusuma (襖, paper-covered sliding doors)
4 panels: ink and color on gold paper with 4 catches which made of metal
97 x 175(height)cm, each
Fusuma is a wood-framed sliding door covered with thick paper. It is movable in grooves and separates the rooms in a Japanese house.
Kamakura period, 13th century
Two representations of demons usually flank sculptures of En no Gyōja, a mountain ascetic traditionally considered the founder of Shūgendō. These sculptures usually lack a rigid iconography. Yet often a fire-haired red demon holding an axe is paired with a curly-haired, water jug-holding green demon. They are named, respectively, zenki (lit. “front demon”) and goki (“back demon”). In paintings, goki frequently has two horns and carries a wooden coffer on its back. This sculpture has iconographic elements associated with zenki and goki, namely the flaming hair of zenki and the coffer linked with goki. Although the coffer itself is a later addition, we can safely assume that a similar item was part of the original ensemble. Over time, it has become impossible to identify the body’s coloration, but the presence of two horns and coffer suggest that this is a sculpture of goki.
The inlaid eyes imbue the work with a lifelike quality, and the musculature of the chest is reminiscent of deva sculptures. The work is a rare example among the group of zenki and goki sculptures. Its dating to the Kamakura period increases its importance.
21,5 x 16cm
Kurohige masks are used to represent dragon deities. In traditional belief, dragons are said to live inside the water and bring rain with them. The lower jar is prominently projecting forward, which is a defining feature of Kurohige masks. The name, Kurohige (literally “black beard”) refers to the black color of the eyebrows and beard in this type of mask.