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Tatebe Ryôtai (Kan'yôsai) (1719-1774)
Egrets among reeds
Signed: Kanyôsai sha
Seals: Ryôtai Môkyô, Daiishô
Technique: colours on silk 105 x 36
Mounting: light blue silk
dark wooden rollers, 176 x 47
Condition: restorations, otherwise fine

Ryôtai (Kanyôsai, or Takebe Ayatari) was the second son of an important samurai family in Mutsu. He was highly educated and, in his relatively short 55 years, he had a restless life with much variety. Ryôtai became a poet and painter as well as a novelist and a native-learning philologist, excelling in all of these fields, though now he is perhaps most famous as a Chinese-influenced painter under the name ‘Kan'yôsai.’

Ryôtai tried priesthood at the Tôfuku-ji temple in Kyoto, but after a short period in Chichibu, he moved to Edo, where he emerged as a haikai master, publishing prolifically. He returned to Kyoto, where he studied under the painter Takaki Hyakusen (1698-1753), the leading Nanga artist there, though he also travelled to Nagasaki to study with the most prominent of the Shen Nan P'in pupils, Kumashiro Yûhi (1693-1772). He studied kokugaku, native studies, under Kamo Mabuchi from 1763, and he became an avid practitioner in this field of scholarship, publishing a number of works on ancient vocabulary, poetic phrasing and literary works, as well as novels in a literary style that summoned up antiquity. Also, he published a number of woodblock-printed albums and painting manuals, which made him more famous as an artist than as a haikai poet.

Marceau 1992
Roberts p. 132
Araki p. 1636
Haiku & haiga p. 201
Addiss '95 # 10
Haiga vol. 4 # 130-131
Kakimori ‘96 # 41-54
Okada & vd Walle # 12

Availability: On Request