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Oumi Hakkei@‹ß]”ªŒi
KEY WORD :@art history / paintings
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Lit. Eight views of Oumi. An early and famous Japanese version of the eight views, or *hakkei ”ªŒi. According to one tradition, in 1500, Regent Konoe Masaie ‹ß‰q­‰Æ (1444-1505) and his son Hisamichi ®’Ê (1472-1544), while visiting Oumi ‹ß] province, near Kyoto, wrote eight Japanese style poems waka ˜a‰Ì describing famous scenes around the western shore of Lake Biwa ”ú”i. However, Masaie's extant diary makes no mention of such a visit nor the poems. Most scholars today consider a calligraphy by Konoe Nobutada ‹ß‰qM›š (1565-1614) Oumi Hakkei-zu jigasan ‹ß]”ªŒi}Ž©‰æŽ^ in the collection of Enman-in ‰~–ž‰@ as the earliest record of what is now known as the standard "eight views", each with its famous accompanying poem.
The other main inspiration for Oumi Hakkei lies in the painting tradition of Scenes of famous places *meisho-e –¼ŠŠG with poetry that refers to, or accompanies such depictions. Six of Nobutada's eight locations are known from records to have been depicted on folding screens of Famous Places of Oumi, including one variation known as Yuki-no-kuni —I‹I‚̍‘ a screen scenes that have been used at least from the early 11c, primarily at Daijoue ‘另‰ï Harvest ceremonies which marked each imperial succession. See *Daijou-e byoubu ‘另‰ï› •—.
Records from as early as the 15c also mention waka and Chinese style poems about various sites in Oumi or around Lake Biwa that refer to the concert of eight. Although a few paintings extant from the late 16c or early 17c represent Oumi in eight views, not until the 1670 handscroll by Kaihou Yuusetsu ŠC–k—Fá (Tokiwabunko í”Õ•¶ŒÉ collection) can we find a work referred to as "Eight Views of Oumi" that shows all the standard sites of Nobutada's selection. However from the late 17c these eight became the norm and were then depicted by a variety of Edo period artists, including members of the Kanou and Tosa schools *Kanouha Žë–ì”h, *Tosaha “y²”h, as well as by *ukiyo-e •‚¢ŠG artists such as Utagawa Hiroshige ‰ÌìLd (also known as Andou ˆÀ“¡ Hiroshige, 1797-1858).
The eight views of Oumi are: Hira no bosetsu ”ä—Ç•éá (Evening Snow at Mt. Hira), Katada no rakugan Œ˜“c—ŽŠå (Descending Geese at Katada), Karasaki no yau “‚è–é‰J (Night Rain at Karasaki), Mii no banshou ŽOˆä”ӏà (Evening Bell at Miidera), Seta no sekishou £“c—[Æ (Sunset Glow at Seta River), Awazu no seiran ˆ¾’а—’ (Clearing Mist at Awazu), (Returning Sails at Yabase) / Yabase no kihan –î‹´‹A”¿ (Returning Sails at Yabase), and Ishiyama shuugetsu ÎŽRHŒŽ (Autumn Moon at Ishiyamadera). Although not irrefutable proof, several later Edo period documents give Nobutada as the originator of this selection and of the poems. Whoever the author, the selection clearly is based on the well-known Chinese poems and paintings of the Eight views of the Xiao and Xiang Rivers (Jp: *Shoushou Hakkei ànÃ”ªŒi). Mt Hira, the Seta river, and the Miidera and Ishiyamadera, all have famous stories associated with them, that are also alluded to in the imagery of the poems. Painted depictions in turn usually echo the poems to show Mt. Hira covered with snow, geese alighting near a pavilion at Katada, a pine in the rain at Karasaki, Miidera at night, the Chinese style bridge at Seta, boats at Yabase, and the moon-viewing pavilion at Ishiyamadera where *Murasaki Shikibu Ž‡Ž®•” is said to have composed GENJI MONOGATARI Œ¹Ž•¨Œê (The Tale of Genji).
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