White-robed Kannon

Artist: Mokuan Reien (fl. ca. 1326-45)
Historical period(s)
Muromachi period, 1330s-40s
Ink on silk
H x W (image): 103.3 x 41.3 cm (40 11/16 x 16 1/4 in)
Credit Line
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Hanging scroll

bodhisattva, Buddhism, halo, Japan, kakemono, Muromachi period (1333 - 1573)
Provenance research underway.

The Kannon Bodhisattva is a deity representing the Buddha's compassion. The White-Robed Kannon is a more particular manifestation who resides on paradisiacal Mt. Potalaka, a mythical setting said to be in the sea south of India. This icon was especially popular with Zen Buddhists. Mokuan, a Japanese, studied in China (1326-28) with the master Liao'an Qingyu (1288-1363). This painting is a literal rendering of the Kannon described in the upper text inscribed by Liao'an.

To learn more about this and similar objects, visit http://www.asia.si.edu/SongYuan/default.asp Song and Yuan Dynasty Painting and Calligraphy.

Published References
  • Zaigai Nihon no Shiho [Japanese Art: Selections from Western Collections]. 10 vols., Tokyo, 1979 - 1980. vol. 3: pp. 114-5, vol. 3: pl. 9.
  • Zaigai hiho [(Japanese Paintings in Western Collections]. 3 vols., Tokyo. vol. 2, pt. II, pl. 70.
  • Genshoku Nihon no Bijutsu [A Kaleidoscope of Japanese Art]. 30 vols., Tokyo, 1966-1980. vol. 27: pl. 39.
  • Dr. John Alexander Pope, Thomas Lawton, Harold P. Stern. The Freer Gallery of Art. 2 vols., Washington and Tokyo, 1971-1972. cat. 20, vol. 2: p. 158.
  • Paths to Perfection, Buddhist Art at the Freer/Sackler. Washington. pp. 106-107.
  • Masterpieces of Chinese and Japanese Art: Freer Gallery of Art handbook. Washington, 1976. p. 108.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Song and Yuan Dynasty Painting and Calligraphy
Google Cultural Institute
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