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A lush portrait introducing one of the most important Japanese artists of the Edo period:
Best known for his paintings Irises and Red and White Plum Blossoms, Ogata Kōrin (1658–1716) was a highly successful artist who worked in many genres and media—including hanging scrolls, screen paintings, fan paintings, lacquer, textiles, and ceramics. Combining archival research, social history, and visual analysis, Frank Feltens situates Kōrin within the broader art culture of early modern Japan. He shows how financial pressures, client preferences, and the impulse toward personal branding in a competitive field shaped Kōrin’s approach to art-making throughout his career. Feltens also offers a keen visual reading of the artist’s work, highlighting the ways Kōrin’s artistic innovations succeeded across media, such as his introduction of painterly techniques into lacquer design and his creation of ceramics that mimicked the appearance of ink paintings. This book, the first major study of Kōrin in English, provides an intimate and thought-provoking portrait of one of Japan’s most significant artists.